Causes of delay in seeking treatment in Iranian patients with breast cancer based on the health belief model (HBM)

Narges Khanjani, Hadis Rastad, Maryam Saber, Behjat Kalantari Khandani, Leila Tavakkoli

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Background: Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women worldwide. Objectives: Regarding the effect of delay on survival in patients with breast cancer and the high incidence of delayed presentation in these patients in Iran, we decided to study the factors affecting delay in seeking treatment in patient with breast cancer in Kerman, South-east of Iran. Methods: In this cross sectional study, 80 cases (with delay time less than 3 months) and 80 controls (patients with delay time more than 3 months) were enrolled. A questionnaire including demographic characteristics, knowledge, attitude, and Health belief model (HBM) subscales was used for data collection after reliability and validity assessment. Results: The majority of the patients were housewives (73.2%) and most of the patients lived in urban areas (63.7%). The results of multivariate logistic regression showed that there was a significant relationship between the perceived barriers OR = 1.48 (CI 95% = 1.18-1.86), cues to action OR = 0.72 (CI 95% = 0.55-0.93), perceived susceptibility OR = 0.87 (CI 95% = 0.78-0.97), and the first symptom OR = 0.259 (CI 95% = 0.08-0.79) with delay in seeking treatment in patients with breast cancer. Conclusions: According to the results, health belief and knowledge about breast cancer were two important factors affecting delay in treatment seeking in patients with breast cancer in Kerman, Iran. In order to reduce this delay, appropriate health education programs should be performed.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere61383
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Cancer Management
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Breast cancer
  • HBM
  • Health belief model
  • Iran
  • Kerman

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