Predicting regular breast cancer screening in African-American women with a family history of breast cancer

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Objective: To evaluate the impact of socioeconomic, personal and affective factors on regular breast cancer screening in at-risk African-American women. Methods: The study was a cross-sectional analysis assessing socioeconomic and affective predictors of breast cancer screening practices. Unaffected African-American women ages 40-64 with a family history of breast cancer were recruited from community settings. The main outcome measures were recent mammography, regular mammography and regular breast self-examinations. Results: The majority of women reported having a recent mammogram (73%) and yearly mammograms (71%). More than half (56%) reported monthly breast self-examinations (BSEs). Available health insurance and risk perception had significant independent associations with regular mammography screening so that women having a mammogram every 6-12 months were more likely to have health insurance [odds ratio (OR) =4.99, 95% confidence interval (Cl): 1.05-23.52], and women not engaged in regular screenings were less likely to perceive future breast cancer risk (OR=0.10, 95% 01:0.01-0.96). Access to regular healthcare had a significant independent association with recent mammography so that women having a mammogram in the past 12 months were more likely to have access to regular healthcare (OR=6.59, 95% Cl: 1.01-42.79). Conclusions: A significant majority of this subset of African-American women engage in repeat mammography screenings with cognitive and economic factors predicting noncompliance. Additional research with repeat mammography users is required so that regular screening practices can be encouraged among all at-risk women.

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