Osteoporosis awareness and health beliefs among Lebanese women aged 40 years and above
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Our study investigated the characteristics of Lebanese women population groups with the poorest knowledge of osteoporosis definition, risk factors, and preventive measures in order to identify categories that should be targeted in future campaigns and educational programs. Higher knowledge scores were reached in women who already heard about the disease and had a formal education. As a result, osteoporosis awareness campaigns and educational programs are mostly needed in populations with lower educational levels.
Our study investigated the characteristics of Lebanese women population groups with the poorest knowledge of osteoporosis definition, risk factors, and preventive measures.
A cross-sectional study, conducted between March and June 2018, enrolled 560 community dwelling women aged 40 years and above. A questionnaire was used to collect data. A proportionate random sample from all Lebanese Mohafazat was used. Data collection was performed through personal interviews. The median was used as a cutoff point for both the Knowledge and Health Belief scales.
The study results showed that 47.3% of participants had a poor knowledge score. Women who received no education, compared to a higher education and have not previously heard about the disease, had lower knowledge scores. In addition, women not taking calcium and vitamin D supplements and not exercising or exercising less than 20 min per day compared to those having these characteristics had lower osteoporosis knowledge levels. A lower knowledge score was associated with less recognized benefits of adequate calcium intake and regular physical activity, more perceived barriers towards their practice, and a less important health motivation. A lower level of education correlated to the same results.
Lower knowledge scores were reached in women who have never heard of osteoporosis and had a lower level of education. As a result, osteoporosis awareness campaigns and educational programs need to target population categories with lower educational levels.
KeywordsKnowledge Osteoporosis Health belief Lebanon
We would thank the participants who generously donated their time in completing the questionnaires to make this research possible and the research assistants who collected the data. We would also like to thank the osteoporosis experts who helped us build the study questionnaire.
Compliance with ethical standards
The Institutional Review Board of the Holy Spirit University of Kaslik (USEK), in compliance with the Hospital’s Regulatory Research Protocol, approved this study protocol based on the fact that the autonomy and confidentiality of participants were respected and since it was an observational study, no harm will be prompted to them. The purpose and requirement of the study were informed to each patient. Consent was obtained as written approval on the ethical consent form.
Conflicts of interest
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