n Health SA Gesondheid - Cultural factors associated with the management of breast lumps amongst Xhosa women : research

Volume 8, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1025-9848



A qualitative research design and an ethno-nursing research method were used to identify cultural factors influencing Xhosa women's health seeking behaviours associated with breast lumps. Focus group interviews, involving Xhosa women with advanced breast cancer and registered nurses caring for these women, were conducted to obtain data. The research results revealed that perceptions on the significance of the female breast, the meaning of a breast lump and the cause of illness influenced their health seeking behaviours. Other factors included a lack of knowledge about breast lumps, experiences that they had upon discovery of the breast lumps and misconceptions about the consequences of medical treatment. The informants sought treatment from traditional healers prior to seeking medical care from the hospital and/or clinics. By the time they sought medical treatment, the breast lumps had often progressed to advanced ulcerated breast cancer, with poor prognoses and poor treatment outcomes. The data revealed that the informants gained insights due to their experiences. It is therefore suggested that they be involved in health education on the prevention of breast cancer.

'n Kwalitatiewe navorsingsontwerp en 'n etnoverpleegkundige navorsingsmetode is gebruik. Die doel was om te bepaal watter kulturele faktore Xhosa vroue se strewe na welstand, wat in verband staan met 'n borsvergroeisel, beïnvloed. Om data in te samel, is fokusgroeponderhoude gevoer met Xhosa vroue wat aan gevorderde borskanker ly en geregistreerde verpleegkundiges wat sodanige vroue versorg. Die navorsingsbevindinge het aan die lig gebring dat persepsies oor die belang van die vroulike bors, die betekenis van 'n borsvergroeisel en die oorsaak van die siekte die strewe na welstand beïnvloed het. Ander faktore sluit in gebrekkige kennis oor borsvergroeisels, belewenisse ten tye van die ontdekking van die borsvergroeisels en wanopvattings oor die gevolge van mediese behandeling. Die informante het behandeling van tradisionele genesers verkry voordat hulle mediese sorg van hospitale en/of klinieke ontvang het. Teen die tyd wat hulle mediese sorg verkry het, het die borsvergroeisels reeds tot gevorderde grade van borskanker ontwikkel. Die prognose en behandelingsuitkomste was derhalwe swak. Daar is bevind dat die informante belangrike insigte vanweë hulle ervarings verkry het. Hulle kan derhalwe betrek word om gesondheidsopvoeding te verskaf ten opsigte van die voorkoming van borskanker.

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