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Breast Cancer Anxiety and Its Links to Media Use and Perceptions of Media Information in African American & Caucasian Women
Unformatted Document Text:  Breast Cancer Anxiety and Media 12 Six question items were used to measure people’s knowledge about breast cancer. The items were "In terms of risk for breast cancer, age does not play a major role," "In terms of risk for breast cancer, family background is important," "The age at which a girl has her first period influences her risk for breast cancer later in life," "Lifestyle, including diet and exercise, is one of the risk factors related to breast cancer," "Breast cancer can occur to every adult woman at any time," and "Getting a mammogram will keep me from getting breast cancer." Respondents were asked whether these six items were true (1) or false (0). The item of "In terms of risk for breast cancer, age does not play a major role" was reverse coded because age is one of the key risk factors for breast cancer (CDC, 2004; NCI, 2004). We created an index of "knowledge about breast cancer" by summing all correct responses. Thus, a "6" in the index means that a respondent answered all the six questions correctly, and a "0" indicates that none of her responses was correct. We also used five variables to measure people’s attention to breast cancer information on television, on the radio, in newspapers, magazines, and on the Internet. Response categories for the items were (1) not at all, (2) a little, (3) some, and (4) a lot. In addition, we conducted an exploratory factor analysis of seven question items to identify factors that influence people’s perceptions of the breast cancer information in the media. Two factors emerged from the analysis using the maximum likelihood factor extraction method and varimax rotation. The first factor, labeled as "positive information," consisted of three question items and displayed an eigenvalue of 2.02. The second factor, "negative information," contained two items and had an eigenvalue of 1.29. The two factors were not significantly correlated (r = .06, p = .18). Combined, they accounted for 66 percent of the total variance. Table

Authors: Frisby, Cynthia. and Fleming, Kenneth.
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Breast Cancer Anxiety and Media 12
Six question items were used to measure people’s knowledge about breast cancer. The
items were "In terms of risk for breast cancer, age does not play a major role," "In terms of risk
for breast cancer, family background is important," "The age at which a girl has her first period
influences her risk for breast cancer later in life," "Lifestyle, including diet and exercise, is one of
the risk factors related to breast cancer," "Breast cancer can occur to every adult woman at any
time," and "Getting a mammogram will keep me from getting breast cancer." Respondents were
asked whether these six items were true (1) or false (0). The item of "In terms of risk for breast
cancer, age does not play a major role" was reverse coded because age is one of the key risk
factors for breast cancer (CDC, 2004; NCI, 2004). We created an index of "knowledge about
breast cancer" by summing all correct responses. Thus, a "6" in the index means that a
respondent answered all the six questions correctly, and a "0" indicates that none of her
responses was correct.
We also used five variables to measure people’s attention to breast cancer information on
television, on the radio, in newspapers, magazines, and on the Internet. Response categories for
the items were (1) not at all, (2) a little, (3) some, and (4) a lot.
In addition, we conducted an exploratory factor analysis of seven question items to
identify factors that influence people’s perceptions of the breast cancer information in the media.
Two factors emerged from the analysis using the maximum likelihood factor extraction method
and varimax rotation. The first factor, labeled as "positive information," consisted of three
question items and displayed an eigenvalue of 2.02. The second factor, "negative information,"
contained two items and had an eigenvalue of 1.29. The two factors were not significantly
correlated (r = .06, p = .18). Combined, they accounted for 66 percent of the total variance. Table


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