Background: Raising breast cancer awareness is a well-established first line strategy to reduce breast cancer mortality. A properly validated instrument is needed to gain a better understanding of breast cancer awareness.
Objective: The objective of this study was to develop and validate an instrument to assess breast cancer awareness in Thai women.
Methods: In this study, we develop and evaluate the validity of the Breast Cancer Awareness Scale (B-CAS). Construct validity was evaluated by using exploratory factor analysis and confirmatory factor analysis, and criterion validity was investigated using ROC curves to examine the associations between B-CAS subscales and breast self-examination. Internal consistency and test-retest reliability were also investigated. This validation process employed two independent samples of Thai women aged 20-64 years collected from communities in southern Thailand.
Results: In total, 660 Thai women (mean age 41 years) participated in this study. Confirmatory factor analysis demonstrated the construct validity of B-CAS (CFI =0.91; NNFI=0.90; GFI=0.95; AGFI= 0.95; RMSEA=0.044, 95%CI 0.041 to 0.047; P < 0.05). Several of the B-CAS subscales demonstrated strong utility in discriminating between women who do and do not regularly conduct breast self-examination. B-CAS also demonstrated strong internal consistency (Cronbach's a=0.86) and test-retest reliability. The final version of B-CAS contains 35 items across five domains: knowledge of risk factors, knowledge of signs and symptoms, attitude to breast cancer prevention, barriers of breast screening, and health behaviour related to breast cancer awareness.
Conclusion: The breast cancer awareness scale (B-CAS) was shown to have good psychometric properties in Thai women, and is likely to prove useful in studying the epidemiology of breast cancer awareness in Thai women, and evaluating breast cancer prevention programs for raising awareness.