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Breast Cancer Knowledge and Beliefs in Subpopulations of African American and Caribbean Women

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Objective: To examine breast cancer belief and knowledge deficits among previously unstudied African and Caribbean subpopulations and to consider the particular knowledge and belief components that are most lacking in each group. Methods: 1364 African American, US-born white, English-speaking Caribbean, Haitian, Dominican, and Eastern European women were recruiting via stratified-cluster sampling. Participants provided demographics and measures of beliefs and knowledge. Results: There were between-group differences in cancer knowledge and beliefs and within-group variation in terms of which particular knowledge and belief items varied. Conclusions: Studying how cognitive factors relate to screening in well-defined minority groups will capacitate interventions suited to the knowledge and belief deficits that characterize populations of diverse women.
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Keywords: breast cancer; health beliefs; knowledge; minority women

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Psychology Department, Long Island University, Brooklyn, NY. 2: Intercultural Institute on Human Development, Brooklyn, NY. 3: Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, Columbia University, New York, NY. 4: Department of Psychology, Adelphi University, Garden City, NY.

Publication date: 2004-05-01

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  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

    The Journal aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact of personal attributes, personality characteristics, behavior patterns, social structure, and processes on health maintenance, health restoration, and health improvement; to disseminate knowledge of holistic, multidisciplinary approaches to designing and implementing effective health programs; and to showcase health behavior analysis skills that have been proven to affect health improvement and recovery.

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