Journal of Cancer Education

, Volume 34, Issue 1, pp 90–97 | Cite as

Breast Density Awareness and Knowledge, and Intentions for Breast Cancer Screening in a Diverse Sample of Women Age Eligible for Mammography

  • Marimer Santiago-RivasEmail author
  • Shayna Benjamin
  • Janna Z. Andrews
  • Lina Jandorf


The objectives of this study were to assess breast density knowledge and breast density awareness, and to identify information associated with intention to complete routine and supplemental screening for breast cancer in a diverse sample of women age eligible for mammography. We quantitatively (self-report) assessed breast density awareness and knowledge (N = 264) in black (47.7%), Latina (35.2%), and white (17%) women recruited online and in the community. Most participants reported having heard about breast density (69.2%); less than one third knew their own breast density status (30.4%). Knowing their own breast density, believing that women should be notified of their breast density in their mammogram report, and feeling informed if being provided this information are associated with likelihood of completing mammogram. Intending mammogram completion and knowledge regarding the impact of breast density on mammogram accuracy are associated with likelihood of completing supplemental ultrasound tests of the breast. These findings help inform practitioners and policy makers about information and communication factors that influence breast cancer screening concerns and decisions. Knowing this information should prepare practitioners to better identify women who may have not been exposed to breast density messages.


Breast density, survey, health literacy Community health Cancer screening 



We acknowledge the support provided to the first author by the American Cancer Society Postdoctoral Fellowship PF-15-019-01 and the National Cancer Institute Grant R03CA195039-01A1. We also acknowledge the support provided by the Kicked it in Heels foundation.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.


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Copyright information

© American Association for Cancer Education 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Oncological SciencesIcahn School of Medicine at Mount SinaiNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.Department of Radiation MedicineHofstra Northwell School of Medicine at Hofstra UniversityHempsteadUSA

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