ABCR  Vol.5 No.4 , October 2016
Knowledge and Awareness of Breast Cancer among Young Women in the United Arab Emirates
Abstract: Background: Breast cancer is the most common cancer among females in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). It carries poor prognosis when detected late. Patients usually present at late stages due to lack of awareness of various aspects of breast cancer. Aim: The objective of this study is to gain insight into the level of knowledge of breast cancer among young adult females in UAE. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among females aged 25 to 45. A total of 492 females were selected using a convenience sampling method. Data were collected through an interview-based questionnaire. Frequency distributions and percentages were used to describe the knowledge tested within the questionnaire. Results: The mean age of the participants was 33.5 years. Almost 27% of our participants received a high school degree. The average total knowledge of our population was 51%. The majority (89%) knew that breast cancer is common and 45% knew that it affects ages above forty. The knowledge of signs and symptoms was 53%, and more than half (57%) knew that the most common presenting sign is a breast lump. The knowledge of risk factors was 43%. Almost 94% knew that cancer can be detected early, and 93% knew that early diagnosis improves outcome. The total knowledge of screening methods was 67%. Conclusion: The study revealed that respondents’ knowledge of breast cancer is less than expected. The increased burden of the disease should be accompanied by powerful means of spreading awareness by implementing campaigns that would improve knowledge deficits.
Cite this paper: Younis, M. , Al-Rubaye, D. , Haddad, H. , Hammad, A. and Hijazi, M. (2016) Knowledge and Awareness of Breast Cancer among Young Women in the United Arab Emirates. Advances in Breast Cancer Research, 5, 163-176. doi: 10.4236/abcr.2016.54019.

[1]   Ministry of Health (2010) Beat Breast Cancer. United Arab Emirates.

[2]   Maughan, K.L., Lutterbie, M.A. and Ham, P.S. (2010) Treatment of Breast Cancer. American Family Physician, 81, 1339-1346.

[3]   US Department of Health and Human Services (2014) Breast Cancer Screening. Washington DC.

[4]   The United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) (2011) Breast Cancer Screening. Rockville, Maryland.

[5]   National Library of Medicine (2014) Breast Cancer. Rockville, Maryland.

[6]   Richards M.A., Stockton D., Babb P. and Coleman M.P. (2000) How Many Deaths Have Been Avoided through Improvements in Cancer Survival? British Medical Journal, 320, 895-898.

[7]   Rossi, S., Cinini, C., Di Pietro, C., Lombardi, C.P., Crucitti, A., Bellantone, R. and Crucitti, F. (1999) Diagnostic Delay in Breast Cancer: Correlation with Disease Stage and Prognosis. Tumori, 76, 559-562.

[8]   Rashidi, A. and Rajaram, S.S. (2000) Middle Eastern Asian Islamic Women and Breast Self-Examination: Needs Assessment. Cancer Nursing, 23, 64-70.

[9]   Rajaram, S.S. and Rashidi, A. (1999) Asian-Islamic Women and Breast Cancer Screening: A Socio-Cultural Analysis. Women & Health, 28, 45-58.

[10]   Al-Sharbatti, S.S., Shaikh, R.B., Mathew, E. and Al-Biate, M.A.S. (2013) Breast Self-Examination Practice and Breast Cancer Risk Perception among Female University Students in Ajman. Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention, 14, 4919-4923.

[11]   Elobaid, Y.E., Aw, T.C., Grivna, M. and Nagelkerke, N. (2014) Breast Cancer Screening Awareness, Knowledge, and Practice among Arab Women in the United Arab Emirates: A Cross-Sectional Survey. PLoS ONE, 9, e105783.

[12]   Abduelkarem, A., Saif, F., Saif, S. and Alshoaiby, T. (2015) Evaluation of Breast Cancer Awareness among Female University Students in University of Sharjah, UAE. Advances in Breast Cancer Research, 4, 9-21.

[13]   Salat, S.A., Rather, A., Ahmad, S. and Khan, A.B. (2010) Breast Cancer Awareness among Females in a Developing World—A Study from Kashmir. East and Central African Journal of Surgery, 15, 16-21.

[14]   Sadler, G.R., Ko, C.M., Cohn, J.A., White, M., Weldon, R. and Wu, P. (2007) Breast Cancer Knowledge, Attitudes, and Screening Behavior among African American Women: The Black Cosmetologists Promoting Health Program.BMC Public Health, 7, 57.

[15]   Somdatta, P.P. and Baridalyne, N.N. (2008) Awareness of Breast Cancer in Women of an Urban Resettlement Colony. Indian Journal of Cancer, 45, 149-153.

[16]   Brunswick, N., Wardle, J. and Jarvis, M.J. (2001) Public Awareness of Warning Signs for Cancer in Britain. Cancer Causes Control, 12, 33-37.

[17]   Wardle, J., Waller, J., Brunswick, N. and Jarvis, M.J. (2001) Awareness of Risk Factors for Cancer among British Adults. Public Health, 115, 173-174.

[18]   Grunfeld, E.A., Ramirez, A.J., Hunter, M.S. and Richards, M.A. (2002) Woman’s Knowledge and Beliefs Regarding Breast Cancer. British Journal of Cancer, 86, 1373-1378.

[19]   Waller, J, McCaffery, K. and Wardle, J. (2004) Beliefs about the Risk Factors for Cervical Cancer in a British Population Sample. Preventive Medicine, 38, 745-753.

[20]   Robb, K.A., Miles, A., Campbell, J., Evans, P. and Wardle, J. (2006) Can Cancer Risk Information Raise Awareness without Increasing Anxiety? A Randomized Trial. Preventive Medicine, 43, 187-190.

[21]   Habib, F., Salman, S., Safwat, M. and Shalaby, S. (2010) Awareness and Knowledge of Breast Cancer among University Students in Al Madina Al Munawara Region. Middle East Journal of Cancer, 1, 159-166.

[22]   Shin, P.T. (2006) Breast Self Examination: Self-Reported Frequency, Quality and Associated Outcomes. Journal of Cancer Education, 21, 175-181.

[23]   Godfrey, K., Agatha, T. and Nankumbi, J. (2015) Breast Cancer Knowledge and Breast Self Examination Practices among Female University Students in Kampala, Uganada: A Descriptive Study. Oman Medical Journal, 31, 129-134.