Sociodemographic factors, health seeking behaviors, reproductive history, and knowledge of cervical screening among women in Swaziland

Academic Article


  • Background: Cervical cancer is the leading cause of cancer among women in Swaziland; however, a low rate of cervical screening in this population has led to high rates of morbidity and mortality from cervical cancer. Objective: To identify factors associated with lack of cervical screening among women in Swaziland. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among 300 women aged 18-69 years attending clinics in three regions of Swaziland from May to August of 2014. An investigator-administered questionnaire was used to collect data on socioeconomic factors, health-seeking behaviors, reproductive history, and cervical screening history and knowledge from the women. Results: Adjusted multivariable logistic regression analysis revealed that women < 30 years of age were less likely to receive a cervical exam compared to women ≥30 years of age (Odds Ratio 0.06, 95% Confidence Interval 0.01-0.67). Women who had a tertiary education were almost 6 times more likely to receive a cervical screening (OR 5.83, 95% CI 1.11-30.50). Women who said that they did not know when to receive cervical screening were 73% less likely to have a cervical exam (OR 0.27, 95% CI 0.01-0.74). Conclusions: Younger age, lower educational level, and lack of knowledge about when to receive a cervical screening affected whether women obtained a cervical screening. This indicates the need for educating women, particularly younger women, about the importance of cervical examinations. Addressing these barriers to screening should lead to a decrease in cervical lesions and cancer, especially in this high HIV-positive population.
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    Author List

  • Aina IO; Raul SM; Padilla LA; Mthethwa-Hleta S; Preko PO; Jolly PE
  • Volume

  • 15
  • Issue

  • 1