The Relationship Between Health Literacy and Patient Participation in Medical Decision Making Among Breast Cancer Patients

Main Article Content

Mahnaz Yadollahi
Elham Siavashi
Somayeh Mostaghim


Health literacy, Patient participation, Breast cancer


Background: Patient participation in medical decisions is essential and requires sufficient knowledge and awareness. Thus, the aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between health literacy and the participation of breast cancer patients in their medical decisions in Shiraz, Iran.

Methods: This was a descriptive-analytical study conducted on 196 women with breast cancer in 2016-2017. Data were collected using the standardized Health Literacy for Iranian Adults (HELIA) and the Decisional Conflict Scale. The data were analyzed using descriptive statistics and inferential methods (t test, Pearson correlation, ANOVA, and Kruskal-Wallis) on SPSS 21.

Results: The mean age of participants was 46.7 years. Their health literacy was inadequate (18.7) and their decisional conflict was average (51.79). There was also an inverse and significant relationship between health literacy and decisional conflict (P < 0.001, r = -0.81)

Conclusion: Increasing health literacy could reduce decisional conflict. It requires training individuals be able to access credible and reliable sources of information. This training can be provided through doctors, treatment staff, and public and social media.


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