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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2019  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 18-25

Perspectives of visual inspection of the cervix with acetic acid as an alternative to Pap smear test as a preventive measure of cervical cancer among female nurses in University College Hospital, Ibadan, Nigeria


1 Department of Nursing, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Osogbo, Osun State; Department of Clinical Nursing, University College Hospital, Ibadan, Nigeria
2 Department of Nursing, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Osogbo, Osun State, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Mrs. Christene E Umukoro
Department of Clinical Nursing, University College Hospital, Ibadan
Nigeria
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/JCRP.JCRP_10_18

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Background: Visual inspection of the cervix with acetic acid (VIA) has been recommended by the World Health Organization as an alternative to the Pap smear test in preventing cervical cancer in low-resource healthcare settings. However, the level of awareness and uptake is still very low in Nigeria. In this study, the awareness and acceptance of VIA as a preventive measure against cervical cancer among female nurses at the University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan was assessed. Materials and Methods: A pretested questionnaire on the knowledge of the risk factors of cervical cancer, uptake of the Pap smear test, and awareness and acceptance of VIA was administered to 301 female nurses at UCH, Ibadan. Results: The majority of the respondents (99%) knew about cervical cancer, but only 62.4% of them were aware that human papilloma virus is a causative agent. Early marriage (73.6%), high parity (64.0%), multiple sexual partners (91.1%), smoking (54.8%), and poor socioeconomic status (42.9%) were identified as risk factors for the disease. The proportion of those that had heard of VIA (43.6%) was low when compared with the Pap smear test (99%). However, 72.4% of them thought that female staff at the screening centers should promote VIA. Moreover, 61.5% believed that definitive treatment of cases could commence immediately after a VIA test. The age, duration of service, and educational qualification did not significantly (P > 0.05) influence the respondents' awareness of VIA as a cervical cancer screening technique. Conclusion: Adoption of VIA as part of routine checkups during postnatal visits and its integration into the nation l healthcare policy is recommended.


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