Journal of Cancer Education

, Volume 33, Issue 2, pp 457–462 | Cite as

Knowledge, Attitude, and Practice on Breast Cancer among Health Professionals in Douala References Hospitals, Cameroon

  • Charlotte Tchente Nguefack
  • Calvin N’djeudjui
  • Jean Paul Ndamba Engbang
  • Théophile Njamen Nana
  • Gregory Halle Ekane
  • Pierre-Marie Tebeu


In Cameroon, patients with breast cancer are more often diagnosed at stage III and IV, hence the need of preventives actions. Knowledge and attitude of medical personnel may influence their practice with regards to screening and early detection of breast cancer. Very few is known about this subject in Cameroon. The objective was to describe the knowledge, attitude, and practice of health care professionals on breast cancer risk factors, diagnostic methods, and screening. This was a cross-sectional study conducted during a 6-month period, among health professionals of Douala General Hospital and Laquintinie Hospital, Cameroon.

Data were collected using a self-administered questionnaire which included demographic characteristics, questions on breast cancer risk factors, screening, and diagnostic methods. Marks were attributed to each question and calculated for each section. Participants fell in four categories of knowledge, attitude, and practice: very weak, weak, good, and excellent. The software XLStat7.5.2 was used for data analysis. Overall, 445 health professionals were interviewed. The average age was 39 ± 9 years. The level of knowledge, attitude, and practice was accessed respectively as weak (50.1%), very good (64.5%), and poor (36.4%). The personal practice of female workers was poor (43.0%). Compared to participants with very weak to weak knowledge, those with good to excellent knowledge had 1.55-fold odds of excellent attitude p < 0.0001. After multivariate analysis, the factor associated with good to excellent knowledge was the participant qualification (academic degree). These results suggest the need for training of health professionals in Douala references hospitals on breast cancer risks factors, diagnostic, and screening methods.


Knowledge Attitude Practice Health professionals Breast cancer Cameroon 



We thank all the health professionals who agreed to participate in the study. We also thank Lucie Sorelle Tchuinte Lekuikeu who provided us language help. This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.


  1. 1.
    World Health Organisation. (2013). Breast cancer: prevention and control. Geneva, Switzerland:WHO. Accessed 12 Dec. 2015
  2. 2.
    Adesunkanmi AR, Lawal OO, Adelusola KA, Durosimi MA (2006) The severity, outcome and challenges of breast cancer in Nigeria. Breast 15(3):399–409CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Kemfang Ngowa JD, Yomi J, Kasia JM, Mawamba Y, Ekortarh AC, Vlastos G (2011) Breast cancer profile in a group of patients followed up at the radiation therapy unit of the Yaoundé General Hospital. Cameroon Obstet Gynecol Int doi: 10.1155/2011/143506 Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Tabar L, Yen MF, Vitak B, Chen HHT, Smith RA, Duffy SW (2003) Mammography service screening and mortality in breast cancer patients: 20-year follow-up before and after introduction of screening. Lancet 361(9367):1405–1410CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Olsen AH, Njor SH, Vejborg I, Schwartz W, Dalgaard P, Jensen MB et al (2005) Breast cancer mortality in Copenhagen after introduction of mammography screening: cohort study. BMJ. doi: 10.1136/bmj. 38313.639236.82
  6. 6.
    Coleman EA, Lord J, Heard J, Coon SM, Cantrell M, Mohrmann C et al (2003) The Delta project: increasing breast cancer screening among rural minority and older women by targeting rural healthcare providers. Oncol Nurse Forum 30(4):669–677CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Akhigbe AO, Omuemu VO (2009) Knowledge, attitudes and practice of breast cancer screening among female health workers in a Nigerian urban city. BMC Cancer. doi: 10.1186/1471-2407-9-203 PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Fotedar V, Seam RK, Gupta MK, Gupta M, Vats S, Verma S (2013) Knowledge of risk factors and early detection methods and practices towards breast cancer among nurses in Indira Gandhi Medical College, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh, India. Asian Pacific J Cancer Prev 14(1):117–120CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Kemfang Ngowa JD, Bommo LF, Fokom Domgue J, Ngassam A, Noa CC, Fouogue Tsuala J et al (2015) Knowledge, attitude and practice of breast screening among health workers at Yaoundé General Hospital. Cameroon Health Sci Dis 16(3):1–6Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Mamane A, Bhatti JA, Savès M, Alioum A, Jutand MA, Hadiza-jackou D et al (2010) Knowledge, attitudes, and practice on breast cancer of non MD health professionals in Niamey, Niger, 2010. J Afr Cancer 4(3):156–163CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Ibrahim NA, Odusanya OO (2009) Knowledge of risk factors, beliefs and practices of female healthcare professionals towards breast cancer in a tertiary institution in Lagos. Nigeria BMC Cancer doi. doi: 10.1186/1471-2407-9-76 Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Seah M, Tan SM (2007) Am I breast cancer smart? Assessing breast cancer knowledge among health professionals. Singap Med J 48(2):158–162Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Kumar S, Imam AM, Manzoor NF, Masood N (2009) Knowledge, attitude and preventive practices for breast cancer among health care professionals at Aga Khan Hospital Karachi. J Pak Med Assoc 59(7):474–478PubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Hsairi M, Fakhfakh R, Bellaaj R, Achour N (2003) Knowledge and practice of doctors and midwives working in primary health care regarding screening for cervical and breast cancers. East Mediterr Health J 9(3):353–363PubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Shiryazdi SM, Kholasehzadeh G, Neamatzadeh H, Kargar S (2014) Health beliefs and breast cancer screening behaviors among Iranian female health workers. Asian Pac J Cancer Prev 15(22):9817–9822CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Yousuf SA, Al Amoudi SM, Nicolas W, Banjar HE, Salem SM (2012) Do Saudi nurses in primary health care centers have breast cancer knowledge to promote breast cancer awareness? Asian Pac J Cancer Prev 13(9):4459–4464CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Akpinar YY, Baykan Z, Naçar M, Gün I, Çetinkaya F (2011) Knowledge, attitude about breast cancer and practice of breast cancer screening among female health care professionals: a study from Turkey. Asian Pac J Cancer Prev 12(11):3063–3068PubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Dugdale DC, Epstein R, Pantilat SZ (1999) Time and the patient–physician relationship. J Gen Intern Med 14(1):S34–S40CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© American Association for Cancer Education 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Douala General Hospital, Department of Surgery and SpecialtiesUniversity of DoualaDoualaCameroon
  2. 2.Douala General HospitalDoualaCameroon
  3. 3.Laquintinie Hospital, Department of Surgery and SpecialtiesUniversity of DoualaDoualaCameroon
  4. 4.Douala General Hospital, Department of Obstetrics and GynecologyUniversity of BueaBueaCameroon
  5. 5.Department of Obstetrics and GynecologyUniversity HospitalsYaoundéCameroon

Personalised recommendations