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Hong Kong Med J. 2002 Oct;8(5):334-41.

Factors affecting uptake of cervical and breast cancer screening among perimenopausal women in Hong Kong.

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  • 1Department of Community and Family Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Prince of Wales Hospital, Shatin, Hong Kong.



To identify factors affecting cervical and breast cancer screening attendance among women aged 44 to 55 years by comparing self-reported uptake of cervical smear and clinical breast examination between patients and a population sample.


Telephone survey and audit of clinic records to confirm patients' self-report.


Two thousand and sixty-seven women identified through random telephone dialling from the residence directory and 319 patients ever-registered at a family practice teaching clinic.


Uptake of cervical smear and clinical breast examination.


The proportion of women undergoing cervical smear tests and clinical breast examination in the previous 12 months were 35.4% and 22.6%, respectively, for randomly selected women, while the figures were 47.2% and 50.6%, respectively, for patients. Record audit confirmed high rates of screening for patients according to evidence-based protocols (85.1% had had a cervical smear within 3 years). For women in the random sample (mean age, 48.9 years; standard deviation, 3.3 years), those who were older, postmenopausal, not receiving hormone therapy, educated to primary level, and with no chronic diseases were least likely to have had screening. For clinic patients (mean age, 47.9 years; standard deviation, 2.8 years), lower education level was the only variable associated with no recent smears.


Healthy perimenopausal and postmenopausal women in the community with lower educational level and not receiving hormone therapy were more likely to be underscreened. Attendance of 44- to 55-year-old women at a family medicine clinic that actively promotes preventive medicine was associated with high screening uptake.

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