Purpose/Objectives: To describe the knowledge and beliefs about breast cancer and breast cancer screenng and practices of clinical breast examination (CBE) and mammography of Korean American women.
Design: Cross-sectional survey.
Setting: Two Korean churches in a mid-sized Southeastern U.S. city.
Sample: A convenience sample of 107 Korean women ages 40 and older.
Methods: Data were collected using Champion's Health Belief Model instrument (susceptibility, seriousness, benefits, and barriers) and the Breast Cancer Knowledge test through mailed questionnaires.
Main Research Variables: Knowledge and beliefs about breast cancer screening and practices of CBE and mammography.
Findings: The percentages of Korean American women who ever had a CBE and mammography were 67 and 58, respectively. Among the Health Belief Model variables, women who never had a CBE had significantly lower knowledge scores and higher perceived barriers to CBE than those who had. Women who never had a mammogram reported significantly higher perceived barriers to mammography. Logistic regression analyses demonstrated that husband's nationality, regular checkups, and encouragement from family members and physicians were significant predictors of CBE and mammography use.
Conclusions: The frequency of breast cancer screening practices among Korean American women is below national objectives.
Implications for Nursing Practice: As healthcare professionals in a culturally diverse nation, nurses need to increase their awareness of cultural variations and provide culturally and linguistically appropriate breast health education. Additional studies with women from a variety of settings are needed to validate present study findings.