Prostate Cancer (CaP) is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among Cameroonian men. Due to inadequate infrastructure, record keeping, and resources, little is known about its true burden on the population. There are rural/urban disparities with regards to awareness, screening, treatment, and survivorship. Furthermore, use of traditional medicine and homeopathic remedies is widespread, and some men delay seeking conventional medical treatment until advanced stages of CaP. This study examined the perceptions, beliefs, and practices of men in Cameroon regarding late stage CaP diagnoses; identified factors that influence screening decision; and ascertained how men decided between traditional or conventional medicine for CaP diagnosis and treatment. Semistructured focus groups were used to collect data from men in Bamenda, Cameroon. Qualitative data analysis was used to analyze transcripts for emerging themes and constructs using a socio-ecological framework. Twenty-five men participated in the study, with an average age of 59. Most of the participants had never received a prostate screening recommendation. Socioeconomic status, local beliefs, knowledge levels, awareness of CaP and screening methods, and stigma were prominent themes. A significant number of Cameroonian men receive late stage CaP diagnosis due to lack of awareness, attitudes, cultural beliefs, self-medication, and economic limitation. To effectively address these contributing factors to late stage CaP diagnosis, a contextually based health education program is warranted and should be tailored to fill knowledge gaps about the disease, dispel misconceptions, and focus on reducing barriers to utilization of health services.
- prostate cancer
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health(social science)
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health