Public Awareness and Barriers to Seeking Medical Advice for Colorectal Cancer in the Gaza Strip: A Cross-Sectional Study

Mohamedraed Elshami, Maha Alfaqawi, Tamer Abdalghafoor, Ayoob A Nemer, Mohammed Ghuneim, Hussien Lubbad, Batool Almahallawi, Mosab Samaan, Abdallah Alwali, Ahmad Alborno, Deyaa Al-Kafarna, Aseel Salah, Karam Shihada, Mohammed Abo Amona, Amira Al-Najjar, Rana Abu Subha, Basma Alhelu, Israa Abujayyab, Loai Albarqouni, Bettina Bottcher

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Abstract

PURPOSE: Raising awareness of colorectal cancer (CRC) symptoms for early recognition, reduction of modifiable risk factors, and removing barriers to seeking medical help could lower its mortality. This study aimed to assess the level of public awareness of CRC in the Gaza Strip.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: This was a cross-sectional study conducted at three hospitals and 10 high schools between September and October 2017. The Arabic version of the validated Bowel Cancer Awareness Measure (BoCAM) questionnaire was used to evaluate awareness of CRC symptoms and risk factors, and barriers to seeking medical help. Adults (age ≥ 18 years) in three major hospitals and adolescents (ages 15 to 17 years) in 10 schools were recruited for face-to-face interviews to complete the BoCAM.

RESULTS: Of 3,172 potential participants, 3,080 completed the BoCAM (response rate, 97.1%). Among these, 1,578 (51.2%) were adults and 1,614 (52.4%) were females. Persistent abdominal pain was the most commonly recognized CRC symptom (n = 1,899; 61.7%), whereas anorectal pain was the least common (n = 1,056; 34.3%). In total, 2,177 (70.7%) were not confident in recognizing CRC symptoms or signs. Having a bowel disease was the most frequently recognized CRC risk factor (n = 1,456; 47.3%) and diabetes the least recognized (n = 591; 19.2%). The overall mean scores ± standard deviations for recalling and recognizing CRC symptoms were 1.2 ± 1.3 and 4.3 ± 2.3, respectively (out of 9 points). The overall mean scores ± standard deviations for recalling and recognizing CRC risk factors were 0.7 ± 0.8 and 8.0 ± 3.1, respectively (out of 16 points). Emotional barriers were the most commonly reported barriers to seeking medical help, with feeling worried about what a doctor might find as the most common barrier (n = 1,522; 49.4%).

CONCLUSION: Public awareness of CRC is suboptimal in Gaza. Improving CRC awareness with educational interventions is needed, including in local schools.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)JGO1800252
JournalJournal of global oncology
Volume5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2019

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Middle East
Colorectal Neoplasms
Cross-Sectional Studies
Colonic Neoplasms
Abdominal Pain
Signs and Symptoms
Emotions
Interviews
Pain

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Elshami, M., Alfaqawi, M., Abdalghafoor, T., Nemer, A. A., Ghuneim, M., Lubbad, H., ... Bottcher, B. (2019). Public Awareness and Barriers to Seeking Medical Advice for Colorectal Cancer in the Gaza Strip: A Cross-Sectional Study. Journal of global oncology, 5, JGO1800252. https://doi.org/10.1200/JGO.18.00252
Elshami, Mohamedraed ; Alfaqawi, Maha ; Abdalghafoor, Tamer ; Nemer, Ayoob A ; Ghuneim, Mohammed ; Lubbad, Hussien ; Almahallawi, Batool ; Samaan, Mosab ; Alwali, Abdallah ; Alborno, Ahmad ; Al-Kafarna, Deyaa ; Salah, Aseel ; Shihada, Karam ; Amona, Mohammed Abo ; Al-Najjar, Amira ; Abu Subha, Rana ; Alhelu, Basma ; Abujayyab, Israa ; Albarqouni, Loai ; Bottcher, Bettina. / Public Awareness and Barriers to Seeking Medical Advice for Colorectal Cancer in the Gaza Strip : A Cross-Sectional Study. In: Journal of global oncology. 2019 ; Vol. 5. pp. JGO1800252.
@article{4510b8e9fce14a51afee6ba136c651c2,
title = "Public Awareness and Barriers to Seeking Medical Advice for Colorectal Cancer in the Gaza Strip: A Cross-Sectional Study",
abstract = "PURPOSE: Raising awareness of colorectal cancer (CRC) symptoms for early recognition, reduction of modifiable risk factors, and removing barriers to seeking medical help could lower its mortality. This study aimed to assess the level of public awareness of CRC in the Gaza Strip.MATERIALS AND METHODS: This was a cross-sectional study conducted at three hospitals and 10 high schools between September and October 2017. The Arabic version of the validated Bowel Cancer Awareness Measure (BoCAM) questionnaire was used to evaluate awareness of CRC symptoms and risk factors, and barriers to seeking medical help. Adults (age ≥ 18 years) in three major hospitals and adolescents (ages 15 to 17 years) in 10 schools were recruited for face-to-face interviews to complete the BoCAM.RESULTS: Of 3,172 potential participants, 3,080 completed the BoCAM (response rate, 97.1{\%}). Among these, 1,578 (51.2{\%}) were adults and 1,614 (52.4{\%}) were females. Persistent abdominal pain was the most commonly recognized CRC symptom (n = 1,899; 61.7{\%}), whereas anorectal pain was the least common (n = 1,056; 34.3{\%}). In total, 2,177 (70.7{\%}) were not confident in recognizing CRC symptoms or signs. Having a bowel disease was the most frequently recognized CRC risk factor (n = 1,456; 47.3{\%}) and diabetes the least recognized (n = 591; 19.2{\%}). The overall mean scores ± standard deviations for recalling and recognizing CRC symptoms were 1.2 ± 1.3 and 4.3 ± 2.3, respectively (out of 9 points). The overall mean scores ± standard deviations for recalling and recognizing CRC risk factors were 0.7 ± 0.8 and 8.0 ± 3.1, respectively (out of 16 points). Emotional barriers were the most commonly reported barriers to seeking medical help, with feeling worried about what a doctor might find as the most common barrier (n = 1,522; 49.4{\%}).CONCLUSION: Public awareness of CRC is suboptimal in Gaza. Improving CRC awareness with educational interventions is needed, including in local schools.",
author = "Mohamedraed Elshami and Maha Alfaqawi and Tamer Abdalghafoor and Nemer, {Ayoob A} and Mohammed Ghuneim and Hussien Lubbad and Batool Almahallawi and Mosab Samaan and Abdallah Alwali and Ahmad Alborno and Deyaa Al-Kafarna and Aseel Salah and Karam Shihada and Amona, {Mohammed Abo} and Amira Al-Najjar and {Abu Subha}, Rana and Basma Alhelu and Israa Abujayyab and Loai Albarqouni and Bettina Bottcher",
year = "2019",
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language = "English",
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pages = "JGO1800252",
journal = "Journal of global oncology",
issn = "2378-9506",
publisher = "American Society of Clinical Oncology",

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Elshami, M, Alfaqawi, M, Abdalghafoor, T, Nemer, AA, Ghuneim, M, Lubbad, H, Almahallawi, B, Samaan, M, Alwali, A, Alborno, A, Al-Kafarna, D, Salah, A, Shihada, K, Amona, MA, Al-Najjar, A, Abu Subha, R, Alhelu, B, Abujayyab, I, Albarqouni, L & Bottcher, B 2019, 'Public Awareness and Barriers to Seeking Medical Advice for Colorectal Cancer in the Gaza Strip: A Cross-Sectional Study' Journal of global oncology, vol. 5, pp. JGO1800252. https://doi.org/10.1200/JGO.18.00252

Public Awareness and Barriers to Seeking Medical Advice for Colorectal Cancer in the Gaza Strip : A Cross-Sectional Study. / Elshami, Mohamedraed; Alfaqawi, Maha; Abdalghafoor, Tamer; Nemer, Ayoob A; Ghuneim, Mohammed; Lubbad, Hussien; Almahallawi, Batool; Samaan, Mosab; Alwali, Abdallah; Alborno, Ahmad; Al-Kafarna, Deyaa; Salah, Aseel; Shihada, Karam; Amona, Mohammed Abo; Al-Najjar, Amira; Abu Subha, Rana; Alhelu, Basma; Abujayyab, Israa; Albarqouni, Loai; Bottcher, Bettina.

In: Journal of global oncology, Vol. 5, 05.2019, p. JGO1800252.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Public Awareness and Barriers to Seeking Medical Advice for Colorectal Cancer in the Gaza Strip

T2 - A Cross-Sectional Study

AU - Elshami, Mohamedraed

AU - Alfaqawi, Maha

AU - Abdalghafoor, Tamer

AU - Nemer, Ayoob A

AU - Ghuneim, Mohammed

AU - Lubbad, Hussien

AU - Almahallawi, Batool

AU - Samaan, Mosab

AU - Alwali, Abdallah

AU - Alborno, Ahmad

AU - Al-Kafarna, Deyaa

AU - Salah, Aseel

AU - Shihada, Karam

AU - Amona, Mohammed Abo

AU - Al-Najjar, Amira

AU - Abu Subha, Rana

AU - Alhelu, Basma

AU - Abujayyab, Israa

AU - Albarqouni, Loai

AU - Bottcher, Bettina

PY - 2019/5

Y1 - 2019/5

N2 - PURPOSE: Raising awareness of colorectal cancer (CRC) symptoms for early recognition, reduction of modifiable risk factors, and removing barriers to seeking medical help could lower its mortality. This study aimed to assess the level of public awareness of CRC in the Gaza Strip.MATERIALS AND METHODS: This was a cross-sectional study conducted at three hospitals and 10 high schools between September and October 2017. The Arabic version of the validated Bowel Cancer Awareness Measure (BoCAM) questionnaire was used to evaluate awareness of CRC symptoms and risk factors, and barriers to seeking medical help. Adults (age ≥ 18 years) in three major hospitals and adolescents (ages 15 to 17 years) in 10 schools were recruited for face-to-face interviews to complete the BoCAM.RESULTS: Of 3,172 potential participants, 3,080 completed the BoCAM (response rate, 97.1%). Among these, 1,578 (51.2%) were adults and 1,614 (52.4%) were females. Persistent abdominal pain was the most commonly recognized CRC symptom (n = 1,899; 61.7%), whereas anorectal pain was the least common (n = 1,056; 34.3%). In total, 2,177 (70.7%) were not confident in recognizing CRC symptoms or signs. Having a bowel disease was the most frequently recognized CRC risk factor (n = 1,456; 47.3%) and diabetes the least recognized (n = 591; 19.2%). The overall mean scores ± standard deviations for recalling and recognizing CRC symptoms were 1.2 ± 1.3 and 4.3 ± 2.3, respectively (out of 9 points). The overall mean scores ± standard deviations for recalling and recognizing CRC risk factors were 0.7 ± 0.8 and 8.0 ± 3.1, respectively (out of 16 points). Emotional barriers were the most commonly reported barriers to seeking medical help, with feeling worried about what a doctor might find as the most common barrier (n = 1,522; 49.4%).CONCLUSION: Public awareness of CRC is suboptimal in Gaza. Improving CRC awareness with educational interventions is needed, including in local schools.

AB - PURPOSE: Raising awareness of colorectal cancer (CRC) symptoms for early recognition, reduction of modifiable risk factors, and removing barriers to seeking medical help could lower its mortality. This study aimed to assess the level of public awareness of CRC in the Gaza Strip.MATERIALS AND METHODS: This was a cross-sectional study conducted at three hospitals and 10 high schools between September and October 2017. The Arabic version of the validated Bowel Cancer Awareness Measure (BoCAM) questionnaire was used to evaluate awareness of CRC symptoms and risk factors, and barriers to seeking medical help. Adults (age ≥ 18 years) in three major hospitals and adolescents (ages 15 to 17 years) in 10 schools were recruited for face-to-face interviews to complete the BoCAM.RESULTS: Of 3,172 potential participants, 3,080 completed the BoCAM (response rate, 97.1%). Among these, 1,578 (51.2%) were adults and 1,614 (52.4%) were females. Persistent abdominal pain was the most commonly recognized CRC symptom (n = 1,899; 61.7%), whereas anorectal pain was the least common (n = 1,056; 34.3%). In total, 2,177 (70.7%) were not confident in recognizing CRC symptoms or signs. Having a bowel disease was the most frequently recognized CRC risk factor (n = 1,456; 47.3%) and diabetes the least recognized (n = 591; 19.2%). The overall mean scores ± standard deviations for recalling and recognizing CRC symptoms were 1.2 ± 1.3 and 4.3 ± 2.3, respectively (out of 9 points). The overall mean scores ± standard deviations for recalling and recognizing CRC risk factors were 0.7 ± 0.8 and 8.0 ± 3.1, respectively (out of 16 points). Emotional barriers were the most commonly reported barriers to seeking medical help, with feeling worried about what a doctor might find as the most common barrier (n = 1,522; 49.4%).CONCLUSION: Public awareness of CRC is suboptimal in Gaza. Improving CRC awareness with educational interventions is needed, including in local schools.

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U2 - 10.1200/JGO.18.00252

DO - 10.1200/JGO.18.00252

M3 - Article

VL - 5

SP - JGO1800252

JO - Journal of global oncology

JF - Journal of global oncology

SN - 2378-9506

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