Motivations, perceptions and interpersonal differences associated with interest in genetic testing for breast cancer susceptibility among women at high and average risk

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Abstract

Women's intentions regarding genetic testing for breast cancer susceptibility were the focus of the present research. We explored motives behind intentions to be tested for genetic susceptibility to breast cancer; the relationships between risk status and risk perceptions and intentions to be tested; and individual differences in coping styles associated with intentions to be tested. Results on 150 women (54 at risk and 96 average risk) showed that: most women would consider being tested; different factors count for reasons for and against testing; motivations to be tested differ between the two risk groups; 'unrealistic optimism' was observed only among women at average-risk; intentions to be tested were related to risk perceptions and to individual differences (in desire for control, external health locus of control, preferences for self-treatment, preferences for medical information, and need for closure) only among women at average-risk. Practical and theoretical implications of these findings are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1071-1086
Number of pages16
JournalPsychology and Health
Volume13
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - 1998

Funding

FundersFunder number
Tel Aviv University

    Keywords

    • Breast cancer susceptibility
    • Genetic testing
    • Individual differences
    • Risk perceptions

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