Breast self-exam and patient interval associate with advanced breast cancer and treatment delay in Mexican women
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The objective of this study was to compare treatment intervals in breast cancer patients according to the detection method (breast self-exam vs screening).
Patients and methods
We conducted a retrospective analysis including 291 breast cancer patients at a Mexican tertiary referral hospital.
Breast cancer detection method was mostly breast self-exam (60%). The median patient interval was 60.5 days, and was associated with marital status and socioeconomic level. Differences between the two groups were statistically significant for global interval, p = 0.002; however, health system interval was not statistically different.
In our country, breast cancer screening is opportunistic, with several weaknesses within its management and quality systems. Our study showed that even in specialized health care centers, breast cancer is detected by self-exam in up to 2/3 of patients, which can explain the advanced stages at diagnosis in our country. In developing countries, the immediate health care access for breast cancer patients should be prioritized as an initial step to reduce the global treatment initiation interval in order to reduce mortality.
KeywordsBreast cancer Breast self-exam Mammogram Mexico
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
None of the authors have any conflict of interests to disclose.
Research involving human participants and/or animals
This retrospective protocol was approved by the Institutional Review Board (Ethics and Human Research Committees) of Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Medicas y Nutricion Salvador Zubiran, Mexico City, Mexico, with the reference number 2120.
Informed consent was obtained from all the patients before undergoing treatment. But our Institutional Review Board (Ethics and Human Research Committees) agreed that patients were not requested to fill out an additional informed consent to participate in this retrospective study since all their information was protected and codified with numbers in our database and the manuscript, and no intervention was given.
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