In disadvantaged populations, including Hispanics, there is a deficit in understanding of cancer risk factors, symptoms, prevention, and treatment. The objective of this study was to assess ovarian cancer knowledge in a population of Hispanic women in Arizona, identify deficiencies, and to evaluate the utility of an educational program developed specifically for this community’s needs. A de novo questionnaire about ovarian cancer was distributed to Hispanic women enrolled in family literacy programs at Mesa Public Schools. Following this assessment, a video educational program was developed, with emphasis on areas of greatest knowledge deficits, and post-intervention assessment administered. Chi square, Wilcoxon rank sum, and Kruskal–Wallis tests were used for analysis. 167 questionnaires were completed in the pretest group and 102 in the post-intervention group. Between groups, there were no differences in age (p = 0.49), education (p = 0.68), or annual income (p = 0.26). In the pretest group, 45 % of questions were answered correctly versus 84 % in the post-test group (p < 0.01). 24.2 % of the initial respondents correctly identified ovarian cancer symptoms versus 85.6 of post-test respondents (p < 0.01). With the program, there was an increase in the number of correct post-test responses for each question and symptom (p < 0.01), except those about hereditary risk of ovarian cancer (p = 0.62) and pelvic anatomy (p = 0.16). Following identification of an ovarian cancer knowledge deficit in this cohort of Hispanic women, an educational tool targeting specific deficiencies successfully increased cancer knowledge and awareness of symptoms. Similar efforts in this and other minority populations should be continued.
- Ovarian cancer
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health(social science)
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health