Effects of Breast Self-Examination Consultation Based on the Health Belief Model on Knowledge and Performance of Iranian Women Aged Over 40 Years


Research Center for Chronic Diseases Home care, Mother and Child Health, Hamadan University of Medicine and Health Sciences, Hamadan, Iran


Background Breast cancer is the most prevalent malignancy in women worldwide; lack of awareness of symptoms and delay on diagnosis of breast cancer are the main causes of mortality among women. This study was conducted with the purpose of assessing the effect of educational consulting for breast self-examination (BSE) based on the health belief model (HBM) on the knowledge and performance of women over 40 years attending health care centers in Hamadan, Iran. Materials and Methods In this quasi-experimental study, eligible women admitted to health centers in Hamadan city in 2015 were randomly assigned to intervention and control groups (n75 in each group). The intervention group received 4 weekly sessions of breast cancer screening consulting based on the HBM. Control group received only routine care. Knowledge, HBM constructs, and BSE practice were compared between the groups before, immediately after and three months after the consultation. Results Before the intervention, no significant differences were observed in knowledge, health belief and practice between two groups. However, after the intervention a significant difference was observed between two groups in mean scores of perceived benefits, perceived barriers, self-efficacy and the health motivations (<0.05). Significant differences were also observed in terms of knowledge and BSE practice (<.01). Conclusions The results indicate the importance of consultation on knowledge and beliefs to improve BSE performance and prevention of breast cancer in Iranian women.