The Relationship Between Women's Health Beliefs and Their Participation in Screening Mammography


Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in women. Early diagnosis of this disease can reducemortality significantly and will promote women’s quality of life. Changes in the women’s beliefs and attitudesare necessary to encourage them to undergo screening mammography. To make this change happen,understanding their health beliefs is important. This attempt is to determine the relationship between women’shealth belief of city of Kerman with their participation in mammography on the basis of health belief model inthe year 2005-2006. This study was an experimental-control one in which the main independent variable washealth blief including different dimensions such as perceived sensitivity, perceived intensity, perceived barriers,perceived benefits, “cues to actions” and self-efficacy. Participation in the mammography was taken as thedependent variable. Two samples consisting of 148 women who had and 148 women who had not underwentmammography were selected. Data were collected through questionnaires and were analyzed by SPSS=12software. The result of this study showed that women’s health belief in some dimensions of health belief modelsuch as perceived benefits of mammography use, the presence of cues to action in mammography use is associatedwith having mammography. Moreover the total score of mammography group was more than the score of thegroup without the mammography. When the two groups were compared in terms of demographic data,experimental group showed significant statistical differences with regard to age, benign breast mass and familyhistory of breast cancer. (P, 0001)Understanding the benefits and advantages of mammography and cues toaction will increase women’s adherence toward doing it. It is of great importance to better realize breast cancerscreening behaviors and factors influencing it. It is also necessary to recognize the factors affecting healthprofessionals’ and particularly nurses’ use of mammography.