Factors Related to Breast Self-Examination Practices Among Premenopausal Women


  • Rungsinoppadol Thotong Epidemiology Section, Research Division, National Cancer Institute
  • Sopittra Somharnwong Epidemiology Section, Research Division, National Cancer Institute
  • Suleeporn Sangrajrang Epidemiology Section, Research Division, National Cancer Institute
  • Natchaporn Pichainarong Faculty of Public Health, Mahasarakham University
  • Pratana Satitvipawee Department of Biostatistics, Faculty of Public Health, Mahidol University
  • Supachai Pitikultang Department of Family Health, Faculty of Public Health, Mahidol University
  • Wisit Chaveepojnkamjorn Department of Epidemiology, Faculty of Public Health, Mahidol University


breast self-examination, breast cancer screening, premenopausal women, breast cancer


Breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related deaths among women globally. Early diagnosis can significantly improve survival rates and quality of life. Breast self-examination is one of the screening methods used for the early detection of breast cancer. Although breast selfexamination is a simple, cost-free and non-invasive procedure, recent findings indicate that screening rates have remained low. This study aimed to assess the prevalence of breast self-examination practices and factors associated with breast self-examination practices among premenopausal women. This cross-sectional study was conducted among premenopausal women who underwent diagnosis and / or treatment at the National Cancer Institute, in Bangkok, between November 2013 and December 2014. Data were collected using questionnaires. A total of 558 premenopausal women participated in the study; 40.7% had performed breast self-examinations, while 59.3% had not. Premenopausal women who were government officers or government employees had higher rates of breast self-examination practice than the housewife group (Odds ratio; OR=3.32, P=0.005), underweight and overweight women had lower breast self-examination practice rates than the normal-weight group (OR=0.57 and 0.44, P=0.004 and 0.027, respectively), and women who with mild and vigorous intensity levels of activity had higher breast selfexamination practice rates than the moderate-intensity group (OR=2.92 and 2.76, P<0.001, respectively). Normally healthy women had higher breast self-examination rates than breastcancer patients (OR=1.67, P=0.010). In conclusion, the prevalence of breast self-examination practices among premenopausal women was still low. Occupation, body mass index (BMI), physical activity and disease status, were related to breast self-examination practices. The relevant authorities should provide breast self-examination training for premenopausal women, to promote correct breast self-examination practices and their regular performance.


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