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Practice of breast self-examination and associated factors among women of reproductive age in the North Shoa Zone, Oromia, Ethiopia, 2022: a convergent mixed-methods study

BMJ Open. 2024 May 15;14(5):e073951. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2023-073951.


OBJECTIVE: To assess practice of breast self-examination (BSE) and associated factors among women of reproductive age in the North Shoa Zone, Oromia, Ethiopia.

DESIGN: Community-based cross-sectional study with a convergent mixed-methods approach.

SETTING: The study was conducted in the North Shoa Zone of Oromia, Central Ethiopia, between 1 May 2022 and 30 June 2022.

PARTICIPANTS: 1076 women of reproductive age were selected using simple random sampling technique for the quantitative study. For the qualitative part, a total of 46 women were approached purposively to elicit rich ideas and insight into the issue. The quantitative data were collected using an interviewer-administered questionnaire, and focus group discussions were used for the qualitative part. Quantitative data were analysed using SPSS V.26. An adjusted OR with a 95% CI was employed. Thematic analysis approach was applied for the qualitative data analysis.

OUTCOME MEASURES: Participants were interviewed to respond whether they practised BSE.

RESULTS: Overall, 192 (18.2%; 15.7%-20.5%) of the participants had ever performed BSE. Having a family history of breast cancer (BC) (adjusted OR (AOR)=6.9, 95% CI 4.6 to 10.3), being knowledgeable on BSE (AOR=3, 95% CI 1.9 to 4.3), having high perceived susceptibility (AOR=1.7, 95% CI 1.2 to 2.5), having high self-efficacy (AOR=1.5, 95% CI 1.1 to 2.3) and having a high perceived benefit to BSE (AOR=1.5, 95% CI 1.1 to 2.3) were significantly associated with increased odds of BSE practice.Four main themes emerged from the qualitative analysis: BC and BSE-related knowledge, perceived benefits of treatment, barriers to BSE practice and enablers of BSE practice.

CONCLUSION: The practice of BSE in this area was considerably low. The North Shoa Zonal Health Office and other stakeholders should disseminate instructional materials that cover the techniques and benefits of regularly performing BSE. Healthcare professionals should engage in the community to address the obstacles women face in practising BSE.

PMID:38749697 | DOI:10.1136/bmjopen-2023-073951

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