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Study of the prevalence of some cancer risk factors and public knowledge about methods of cancer prevention and early diagnosis

DOI: https://doi.org/10.29296/25877305-2021-12-07

V. Levshin, MD; N. Slepchenko N.N. Blokhin National Medical Research Center of Oncology,

Cancer incidence in the world and in Russia continues to grow. It is possible to stop the growth of morbidity only by cancer prevention measures. These measures implementation and realization of their cancer prevention capabilities significantly depends on health literacy and motivation of people to follow prevention recommendations. Objectives: The purpose of the work is to study the spread of some cancer risk factors and to evaluate people’s knowledge about cancer causes and risk factors. Methods: The study was conducted on a random sample of the adult population of Moscow numbering 310 people aged 20–79 years. The main method of research is personal interviewing using a unified and structured questionnaire regarding the presence of bad habits, some characteristics of nutrition, physical activity and knowledge about cancer causes and cancer prevention and early diagnosis methods. Results: In the adult sample study, the percentage of all persons who ever smoked was 62.2% among men and 24.6% among women. The percentage of people who consumed alcoholic beverages 2 times a week or more often was 25.2% (95%CI 17%–33%) among men and 4% (95%CI 3.3%–4.7%) among women. Only 16% surveyed respondents followed the healthy diet recommendation. Recommended as prophylactic against cancer regime of physical activity was observed by less than half of all persons, 45.5%. Majority, 53.8% the respondents were unaware of cancer causes or named only one true cause. 37.9% (95% CI 32%–43%) respondents did not know about measures for the prevention of cancer diseases. About methods of early diagnosis of tumors, the majority, 60.0% (95%CI 55%–65%) respondents did not know anything or gave incorrect answers. Conclusions: Most of the respondents in a random sample of the population did not know or had incorrect or insufficient knowledge about the cancer causes, measures for their prevention and early diagnosis. It is necessary to organize active education of the population on the relevant topic using all available types and channels of information.

risk factors
cancer prevention
health literacy

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