Mammography Utilization among Turkish Women


In Turkey, breast cancer is the leading type of cancer and cause of cancer-related deaths among women,but information is limited on mammography practices. The objectives of the present study were to identifyassociations between attitudes and knowledge about mammography and socio-demographic indicators andhaving a mammogram. The participants of this cross-sectional and descriptive study were 1,208 women whoattended the primary health care unit serving as a training unit of the medical faculty or the outpatient clinicfor breast diseases of the same medical faculty’s hospital between October and December 2007. A printedquestionnaire covering socio-demographic variables, family history of breast cancer, mammography practices,and attitudes and knowledge of mammography was filled out in face-to-face interviews with the authors. Womenwith previously diagnosed breast cancer were excluded from the study. We performed chi square and logisticregression analyses. We found that 12.7% of the women had no knowledge of mammography, and 57.3 % hadnever had a mammogram. Fifty point six percent of our study group reported that they had had a clinical breastexamination at least once, and 51.1% were aware of breast self examination (BSE). Need factors such as age andhealth-system-related factors such as awareness of BSE and having CBE were found to be more important thanthe socio-economic factors in mammography use. Mammography was accepted by 92.3% as a useful screeningmethod for early detection of breast cancer and as a necessity for women of 50 years and over by the 90.6% ofthe study group. We found a positive attitude towards mammography and its importance but limited usage.