, Volume 7, Issue 4, pp 347-359,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.
Date: 14 Mar 2008

Predictors of choosing life-long screening or prophylactic surgery in women at high and moderate risk for breast and ovarian cancer

Abstract

The aim of this study is to summarize published empirical data describing the predictors of adhering to screening practices and choosing to have prophylactic surgery in women at increased risk for breast and ovarian cancer. Pubmed, Psychinfo and Cinahl databases were searched to identify studies on the predictors of adherence to breast and ovarian cancer screening and predictors of having a prophylactic mastectomy or salpingo-oophorectomy. We found 37 empirical studies that met our inclusion criteria. The main predictors of the use of preventive measures are related to DNA test results, socio-demographic characteristics, and psychological outcome measures. It is concluded that there is no unequivocal relationship between age, education, risk perception, or anxiety and adherence to breast and ovarian cancer screening practices. Worrying about cancer is associated with a higher adherence to screening practices.