A survey on knowledge, attitudes and screening practices on cervical cancer of Dagoretti women in Nairobi
Ambani, Elizabeth Kurwa
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Cancer of the cervix is the commonest female malignancy accounting for 24% of all cancers in women in the world. Yet this disorder can be prevented by deploying both primary and secondary preventive measures such as genital hygiene practices, use of barrier methods like condoms, avoiding early sexual intercourse, postponing marriage to a later age, avoiding many sexual partners and having regular papsmear screening. It has been suggested, awareness of these primary and secondary factors coupled with positive attitude; largely influence the practice of preventive measures against cervical cancer. This was a cross-sectional study designed to establish the level of knowledge, perceptions, beliefs, attitudes screening, and preventive practices of cervical cancer among women in Dagoretti Division, Nairobi. Four hundred and sixty two (462) respondents aged 20-59 were interviewed using structured questionnaire in addition to three Focus Group Discussions (FGDs). Sixty of the 462 and sixty respondents (13%) had knowledge on cervical cancer and only 7.4% sought screening services. Knowledge of cervical cancer among the respondents was statistically associated with age (˛ =39.23; p=0.0003), marital status (˛ =13.16, p=0.01), education (˛ =39.43, p=0.00002) and occupation of respondent (˛ = 20.14; p=0.002). Respondents who had college and above exhibited more knowledge of cervical cancer than those with no education (OR 10.83, p=0.001). Three hundred and eighty five (83.3%) of the respondents had positive attitude towards cervical cancer screening and pelvic examination. There was a statistical association between marital status and attitude towards screening (˛ =6.37, p=0.041) and similarly between parity of respondent and attitude towards screening (˛ =8.86, p=0.002). There was a statistical association between education and screening practice (˛ =29.87, p=0.00002). The respondents who had secondary and college education practiced screening more compared to the rest (OR 11.35, p=0.0002). Occupation was also associated with screening practice (˛ =11.77; p=0.0028). The respondents who were employed practiced screening more than the self-employed and the unemployed Knowledge of cervical cancer had an influence on practice of screening. The results of this study showed that, there is inadequate knowledge on cervical cancer and screening and very few women practice screening. There is little communication between medical personal and clients since most of them were not counseled on screening. The women had positive attitude even though they had inadequate information. There is need to raise awareness of knowledge and screening for cervical cancer among women. Further research needs to be undertaken to find out the prevalence of cervical cancer or cervical dysplasia among women residents of Dagoretti Divisions and in Kenya.
- MST-Zoological Sciences