A radiographer-delivered intervention to promote early presentation of breast cancer among women as they leave the routine protection of the NHS breast screening programme
© BioMed Central 2006
Published: 10 July 2006
Older age is a risk factor both for developing breast cancer and for delayed presentation of the disease. Routine breast screening on the NHSBSP, however, ends at age 70. Our aim was to develop a radiographer-delivered psycho-educational intervention to be delivered at the point when the women leave the routine protection of the NHSBSP in order to: increase women's knowledge about breast symptoms and risk, promote disclosure of symptoms to someone close, reduce perceptions of barriers and increase intentions to seek help, and counter the interpretation by older women that their risk of breast cancer diminishes once routine screening ends.
The ultimate aim of the intervention is to reduce the proportion of older women with breast cancer who delay their presentation, and to thereby save lives.
We report the development of two variants of the intervention: a booklet and a 10-minute, radiographer-delivered, interview plus the booklet. Both variants of the intervention have been piloted within the South East London Breast Screening Programme and been shown to be acceptable and feasible to women and the Programme. A randomised controlled trial is planned to assess the effect of the intervention on delayed presentation and survival.