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Submitted: 16 May 2007 Modified: 23 August 2018
HERDIN Record #: PCHRDPC936068

Breast cancer in the Philippines: Determinants of stage at diagnosis.

Corazon A. Ngelangel,
Lyndon Lacaya

Breast cancer is a major type of cancer among Filipinos since the 1970s ranking #2 currently; among females, breast cancer ranked #1. Age-standardized incidence rate in Manila for 1983-1987 remained high at 49.5 per 100,000 (crude rate of 27.2 per 100,000). Early stage breast cancer (cTNM l & ll) has significantly better crude 5-year survival rates compared to late stage disease (cTNM lll & lV). Filipino breast cancer patients, however, usually come in as late stages at first diagnosis. This case-control study comparing 265 (Spearman-Brown formula) late stage Filipino breast cancer cases against 179 early stage cases, therefore looked at several factors thought to determine the stage at which a patient with such disease will present at first diagnosis. These factors included attitudes and priorities regarding breast cancer; awareness, utilization, availability of health services and programs; and reasons for delay in diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer. Chi-square, t-test, and multidimensional scaling looked at any difference at 5% level of significance. The only statistically significant difference seen, however, was that late stage breast cancer cases consulted other non-physician-or-paramedical health provider (i.e. herbularyo, hilot, faith healer, etc) more than the early stage group. This did not however, contribute significant delay in the diagnosis/treatment of the disease. Attitudes, perceptions, knowledge and treatment-seeking behavior of both early and late stage groups were similar . Negative determinants were financial constraints, non-awareness of gravity of first symptoms of breast cancer, and fear of being diagnosed as with cancer. Preventive medicine (primary and secondary) practice was lacking both among the patients and their attending physicians.

Publication Type
Publication Sub Type
Journal Article, Original
Philippine Journal of Internal Medicine
Six times a year (6x/year)
Publication Date
July-August 1992
LocationLocation CodeAvailable FormatAvailability
Philippine Council for Health Research and Development Library Box No.46 Fulltext pdf (Request Document)
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