Awareness of Skin Cancer, Prevention, and Early Detection among Turkish University Students
Isik, Sevcan Avci
Elbas, Nalan Ozhan
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Objective: The aim of this study was to determine the awareness about skin cancer, prevention, and early detection among university students. Methods: This descriptive cross-sectional study was carried out with 404 students in a university located in Ankara, the capital city of Turkey. A 35-item questionnaire was used for data collection. Results: Less than half of the students (37.9%) had knowledge about skin cancer mostly through the internet (24.5%) and media (24.1%). Half of them aware of the risk factors; mostly as avoiding direct exposure to the Sun between 10 am and 4 pm (45.3%); smoking and alcohol (38.4%); having fair skin color (34.9%); and ultraviolet light exposure (25.7%). Only one-third of them (32.9%) are knowledgeable about skin cancer signs and symptoms, such as a change in color and appearance of the nevus/moles (24%). The majority of the responders (77.3%) did not know about screening tests for skin cancer and only 18 (4.5%) students were practicing skin self-examination. Conclusions: This study showed a lack of knowledge about skin cancer, prevention, and early detection among university students and reported the need for educational interventions to raise awareness in this target group.