Dissertation Abstract

An Analysis of the Relationship Between Health Locus of Control, Health Value, Selected Demographics, and Compliance With Early Detection of Breast Cancer Among African American Women Who Are Active Members of a Black Sorority in Northeastern Ohio

Publication Number:  AAT3152238
Author:  Walker, Gerry
School:  Kent State University
Date:  2004
Pages:  289
Subject:  Public Health

Breast cancer continues to be the most frequently diagnosed cancer among women in Ohio and is presently at a high of 31% of all cancers. African American women with cancer have a lower chance to survive 5 years than do White Americans.

This is the first study of its kind in Northeastern Ohio that has assessed the knowledge, behavior, and attitudes concerning breast cancer and the health practice of breast self-examination, mammography, and clinical breast examination among African American sorority members.

The purpose of this study was to examine systematically the relationship between health locus of control, health value, selected demographics, and the self-reported participation in early detection of breast cancer among African American women who are active members of one of four Black Alumnae Sororities in Northeastern Ohio. The study assessed 106 subjects from a sample size of 144 sorority members from Alpha Kappa Alpha, Delta Sigma Theta, Zeta Phi Beta, and Sigma Gamma Rho in Northeastern Ohio. It examined the health locus of control and health values as they influenced the informed decision making for breast health among African American sorority members. A Pearson Chi-Square Contingency Table and t-test were used to measure the frequency outcomes.

The results indicated "social recognition," "pleasure," "happiness," "age at onset of menses," and "eating healthy meals" influenced the subjects' decisions to participate in breast health screening. Moreover, subjects generally followed doctor's orders. If the doctor recommended a mammogram, the subjects usually followed the doctor's instructions and had a mammogram done along with a clinical breast examination.

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