Asian Oncol Nurs.  2012 Feb;12(1):52-60. 10.5388/aon.2012.12.1.52.

Relationships between Knowledge about Early Detection, Cancer Risk Perception and Cancer Screening Tests in the General Public Aged 40 and Over

  • 1Department of Nursing, Dankook University, Cheonan, Korea.


This study is to determine knowledge about early detection and risk perception of cancer according to taking cancer screening tests in the general population.
The participants were 151 people aged 40 yr or older. A questionnaire consisted of knowledge about early detection (warning signs, cancer screening methods, general knowledge for early detection), cancer risk perception and history of cancer screening during past 2 yr.
The percentages of correct answers were 64.7% in knowledge about warning signs, 73.7% in knowledge of cancer screening tests and 80.1% in general knowledge for early detection. Participants had the highest knowledge about screening methods for stomach cancer and the lowest for liver and colon cancer. The level of risk perception was medium. The participants who participated in cancer screening showed lower risk perception than those who did not. There was no significant relationship between knowledge and performance of cancer screening. The primary reason for not participating in cancer screening was patient's perception of their own health.
These results suggest that cancer risk perception can affect the performance of cancer screening and we need to study how to handle this problem. Additionally screening programs should focus on liver cancer and colon cancer.


Cancer Screening; Early Detection of Cancer; Risk; Middle Aged
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