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The Knowledge of South African Men Relating to Cervical Cancer and Cervical Cancer Screening


Cervical cancer is the second most common cancer in South African women, but the most common cancer in Black women. Despite having a national cervical cancer screening programme, most women present with advanced disease. Men play a role in cervical cancer as the HPV, the major cause of cervical cancer, is sexually transmitted. The purpose of our study was to describe the knowledge men, living in Muldersdrift, had about cervical cancer, cervical cancer screening and the cervical cancer screening programme and how they preferred to be taught about these health issues. We used a survey design and convenience sampling to select 101 men older than 18 years (n = 101). A pretested self-developed questionnaire was used as the data collection instrument, and the data were analyzed using the SPSS version 22-computer program and quantitative content analyses. The Fischer’s exact test measured associations between variables (p = 0.05). The ages of the sample (n = 101) ranged from 18 to 92 years; most were from the Zulu cultural group, unemployed and unmarried. The majority (66.3%, n = 67) had not heard of cervical cancer, the cervical cancer screening programme (60.4%, n = 61) or the Pap smear (67.3%, n = 68). Age and educational level did not influence having ever heard of these health issues. HPV infection was the most well-known risk factor, and the very late symptoms of cervical cancer were the least known. Most men preferred to be educated in a group, which provided a practical, feasible and cost effective way of educating men living in this community about these health issues.

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Correspondence to Johanna E. Maree.

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Rwamugira, J., Maree, J.E. & Mafutha, N. The Knowledge of South African Men Relating to Cervical Cancer and Cervical Cancer Screening. J Canc Educ 34, 130–136 (2019).

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  • Cervical cancer
  • Cervical cancer screening
  • Knowledge
  • Men
  • South Africa