152433 Influence of Religious and Spiritual Beliefs on Breast Health Choices among Nigerian Women in Houston, TX

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Angela Vassallo, MPH , Office of Surveillance and Public Health Preparedness, City of Houston, Department of Health and Human Services, Houston, TX
Lowell Sever, PhD , University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Houston, TX
Richard Grimes, PhD , University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Houston, TX
Gbadebo Ogunbade, DVM, MPH , Institute of Community Health, University of Houston, Houston, TX
Adebowale Awosika-Olumo, MD, MS, MPH , Bureau of Epidemiology, City of Houston, Department of Health and Human Services, Houston, TX
Lovell Jones, PhD , The Center for Research on Minority Health, UT MD Adnerson Cancer Center, Houston, TX
Nigerian women frequently site their faith in God as an important part of their lives, yet the influence it has on their breast health decision-making has never been studied. As a result, this study attempted to assess the influence of religious and spiritual beliefs on breast health choices among Nigerian women in Houston, Texas, by examining their: 1) religiosity and spirituality, 2) breast cancer knowledge, attitudes and beliefs, and 3) mammography utilization. A behavioral survey was administered in two Nigerian churches, two Nigerian restaurants, and at two community meetings. The population studied was Nigerian women who live in Houston, Texas, and surrounding counties, from any Nigerian ethnic group, who were 35 years of age and older.

Analysis found that mammography rates among this sample are relatively high; as 71% of the participants have had a mammogram, while 28% have never had a mammogram. These mammography rates are especially interesting since 37% of the participants were 35-40 years of age (under age 40 - the age recommendation for mammography in the USA). A Pearson Chi Square test was conducted to better understand how time lived in the USA has affected mammography rates among this sample. According to this analysis, women who have lived in the USA for 10 or more years, have a higher percentage of mammography at 85%, while those who have lived in the USA less than 10 years have a 50% mammography rate. This correlation shows statistical significance with a p value of 0.004.

Learning Objectives:
1. Identify the importance of cultural knowledge in breast cancer screening practices 2. Adapt breast cancer screening programs for immigrant communities

Keywords: Breast Cancer, Faith Community

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Any relevant financial relationships? No
Any institutionally-contracted trials related to this submission?

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.