Indian Journal of Cancer
Home  ICS  Feedback Subscribe Top cited articles Login 
Users Online :1267
Small font sizeDefault font sizeIncrease font size
Navigate here
  Search
 
  Next article
  Previous article 
  Table of Contents
  
Resource links
   Similar in PUBMED
   Search Pubmed for
   Search in Google Scholar for
   Article in PDF (126 KB)
   Citation Manager
   Access Statistics
   Reader Comments
   Email Alert *
   Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)  

 
  In this article
   References

 Article Access Statistics
    Viewed3215    
    Printed86    
    Emailed3    
    PDF Downloaded408    
    Comments [Add]    
    Cited by others 7    

Recommend this journal

 


 
LETTER TO EDITOR
Year : 2009  |  Volume : 46  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 252-253
 

Lack of awareness about breast cancer and its screening in developing countries


1 Department of Internal Medicine, Prince George's Hospital, 3001 Hospital Drive, Cheverly, MD 20785, USA
2 Department of Nuclear Medicine, Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital & Research Center, Block R-3, Johar Town, Lahore, Pakistan

Date of Web Publication25-Jun-2009

Correspondence Address:
M M Rizwan
Department of Internal Medicine, Prince George's Hospital, 3001 Hospital Drive, Cheverly, MD 20785
USA
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0019-509X.52969

Rights and Permissions



How to cite this article:
Rizwan M M, Saadullah M. Lack of awareness about breast cancer and its screening in developing countries. Indian J Cancer 2009;46:252-3

How to cite this URL:
Rizwan M M, Saadullah M. Lack of awareness about breast cancer and its screening in developing countries. Indian J Cancer [serial online] 2009 [cited 2019 May 21];46:252-3. Available from: http://www.indianjcancer.com/text.asp?2009/46/3/252/52969


Sir

The data presented by Patra [1] represents a holistic picture about the state of breast cancer awareness in developing countries. Because of other compelling healthcare issues, breast cancer is not regarded as a health care priority and cancer awareness programs are either nonexistent or dysfunctional in the third world. Just to give a quick comparison, 75% of the women conduct Breast Self Examination (BSE) in the United States, [2] in contrast only 30.3% of the females from Saudi Arabia have even heard of BSE. [3] In Iran 1402 women were interviewed recently and only 61% of the respondents knew about breast cancer. [4] Similarly, awareness about breast cancer screening in Pakistan can be accessed from the fact that only 14% of the mammography tests performed in the country's leading cancer institute were for a screening purpose. [5] In most of the developing countries the incidence of breast cancer is currently low, but rapid industrialization, westernization of lifestyle, urban development, an increase in life expectancy, and delayed and reduced fertility are some of the factors responsible for increasing the incidence of breast cancer and it seems that the incidence will continue to grow in the years to come.

Similar to Patra, [1] many other researchers have identified television as the leading medium of information. However, low literacy rates call for more effective and targeted media campaigns. Public service messages should be broadcasted using credible celebrities to convey the message in a culturally appropriate manner that resonates with target population. Novel channels of delivery such as prime time television melodramas, situational comedies, commercials, and the Internet should also be explored. Product advertising studies show that the effects of mass media campaigns tend to be of a short duration, hence, these strategies should be best used in combination with other approaches. Training social workers, school teachers, and others who are regarded as trusted agents of the community could go a long way.

Treatment of early disease is less resource intensive and has excellent outcomes, underscoring the importance of promoting early detection in low and middle income regions. However, resource constrains lead to limited applications of breast healthcare guidelines developed for western nations. Due to the high cost of mammography, lack of necessary infrastructure, and the fact that the peak incidence in India and neighboring countries is in the younger population, usefulness of mammography as a screening tool is questionable. For countries like India, it seems logical to consider clinical breast examination and BSE as a screening modality; however, there is an urgent need to establish a screening protocol. It has been asked that low income countries should come together and develop a common ground for measures to reduce breast cancer rates and practice economically feasible and culturally compatible diagnostic and therapeutic modalities. [6]

 
  References Top

1.Somdatta P, Baridalyne N. Awareness of breast cancer in women of an urban resettlement colony. Indian J Cancer 2008;45:149-53.  Back to cited text no. 1  [PUBMED]  Medknow Journal
2.Tu SP, Reisch LM, Taplin SH, Kreuter W, Elmore JG. Breast self-examination: Self-reported frequency, quality, and associated outcomes. J Cancer Educ 2006;21:175-81.  Back to cited text no. 2  [PUBMED]  
3.Jahan S, Al-Saigul AM, Abdelgadir MH. Breast cancer: Knowledge, attitudes and practices of breast self examination among women in Qassim region of Saudi Arabia. Saudi Med J 2006;27:1737-41.  Back to cited text no. 3  [PUBMED]  
4.Montazeri A, Vahdaninia M, Harirchi I, Harirchi AM, Sajadian A, Khaleghi F, et al . Breast cancer in Iran: Need for greater women awareness of warning signs and effective screening methods. Asia Pac Fam Med 2008;7: 6.   Back to cited text no. 4    
5.Badar F, Faruqui ZS, Ashraf A, Uddin N. Third world issues in breast cancer detection. J Pak Med Assoc 2007;57:137-40.  Back to cited text no. 5  [PUBMED]  
6.Smith RA, Caleffi M, Albert US, Chen TH, Duffy SW, Franceschi D, et al . Breast cancer in limited-resource countries: early detection and access to care. Breast J 2006;12:16-26.  Back to cited text no. 6    



This article has been cited by
1 Breast Cancer Knowledge and Related Behaviors among Women in Abha City, Southwestern Saudi Arabia
Ahmed A. Mahfouz,Mervat H. A. Hassanein,Shamsun Nahar,Aesha Farheen,Inasse I. Gaballah,Amani Mohamed,Faten M. Rabie,Razia Aftab
Journal of Cancer Education. 2013; 28(3): 516
[Pubmed] | [DOI]
2 Systematic Review of Breast Cancer Biology in Developing Countries (Part 1): Africa, the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Mexico, the Caribbean and South America
Riyaz Bhikoo,Sanket Srinivasa,Tzu-Chieh Yu,David Moss,Andrew G Hill
Cancers. 2011; 3(4): 2358
[Pubmed] | [DOI]
3 Epidemiological survey and PCR based detection of mutation for breast cancer in West Bengal, India
Chatterjee, A., Mukherjee, G.
Asian Journal of Microbiology, Biotechnology and Environmental Sciences. 2011; 13(2): 285-288
[Pubmed]
4 Systematic review of breast cancer biology in developing countries (part 1): Africa, the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Mexico, the Caribbean and South America
Bhikoo, R., Srinivasa, S., Yu, T.-C., Moss, D., Hill, A.G.
Cancers. 2011; 3(2): 2358-2381
[Pubmed]
5 Improving Breast Cancer Control via the Use of Community Health Workers in South Africa: A Critical Review
Brianna M. Wadler, Christine M. Judge, Marianne Prout, Jennifer D. Allen, Alan C. Geller
Journal of Oncology. 2011; 2011: 1
[VIEW] | [DOI]
6 Opportunity for breast cancer screening in limited resource countries: A literature review and implications for iran
Asadzadeh, V.F., Broeders, M., Kiemeney, L., Verbeek, A.
# # Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention. 2011; 12(10): 2467-2475
[Pubmed]
7 Breast Cancer in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: An Emerging and Challenging Epidemic
Arafat Tfayli, Sally Temraz, Rachel Abou Mrad, Ali Shamseddine
Journal of Oncology. 2010; 2010: 1
[VIEW] | [DOI]



 

Top
Print this article  Email this article
Previous article Next article

    

  Site Map | What's new | Copyright and Disclaimer
  Online since 1st April '07
  2007 - Indian Journal of Cancer | Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow