Can cancer risk information raise awareness without increasing anxiety? A randomized trial

Robb, K.A. , Miles, A., Campbell, J., Evans, P. and Wardle, J. (2006) Can cancer risk information raise awareness without increasing anxiety? A randomized trial. Preventive Medicine, 43(3), pp. 187-190. (doi:10.1016/j.ypmed.2006.04.015)

Full text not currently available from Enlighten.

Abstract

<p>Objective: Promoting public awareness of cancer risk factors is an important public health goal, but there is concern that it could heighten anxiety. This study examined the impact of mailed information about colorectal cancer on awareness of risk factors, emotional well-being, and interest in attending screening in a population not previously exposed to screening.</p> <p>Method: Individuals (3,185) aged 45–66 years registered with general practitioners in South-West England in 2004 were randomized to (1) control group (no information), (2) information on colorectal cancer risk factors, or (3) information on risk factors and colorectal screening. All participants were sent a questionnaire assessing knowledge, anxiety, worry about colorectal cancer, and interest in screening.</p> <p>Results: Questionnaires (1,945; 61%) were returned. As expected, participants receiving information had significantly greater knowledge than the control group. Anxiety scores were in the normal range and neither anxiety nor worry about cancer differed significantly between the groups. Ninety-three percent of respondents indicated they would be interested in screening, with equally high levels across groups.</p> <p>Conclusion: This study suggests that information leaflets can promote knowledge of cancer risk factors without increasing anxiety. Low-cost educational materials have the potential to contribute to public engagement with health promotion and disease prevention.</p>

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Robb, Dr Katie
Authors: Robb, K.A., Miles, A., Campbell, J., Evans, P., and Wardle, J.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > General Practice and Primary Care
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > Mental Health and Wellbeing
Journal Name:Preventive Medicine
ISSN:0091-7435
ISSN (Online):1096-0260
Published Online:12 June 2006

University Staff: Request a correction | Enlighten Editors: Update this record