Intention to Participate in Predictive Genetic Testing for Hereditary Cancer: The Role of Attitude toward Uncertainty

  • Braithwaite D
  • Sutton S
  • Steggles N
  • 19

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Abstract

This study aimed to identify factors predictive of intentions to participate in genetic testing for hereditary cancer. Measures of the psychosocial influences on intention were based on the theories of reasoned action (TRA) and planned behaviour (TPB) and a new measure of Attitude toward Uncertainty. The participants (the breast cancer sample, n = 124; the colon cancer sample, n = 168) were recruited via a general practitioner's patient database and asked to complete postal questionnaires. The overall response rate was 57.4% (54.7% in the colon cancer sample, 61.4% in the breast cancer sample). In the colon cancer sample, 72% of respondents stated that they would choose to participate in genetic testing for colon cancer susceptibility. In the breast cancer sample, 77% of respondents stated that they would choose to participate in genetic testing for breast cancer susceptibility. The TRA components (attitudes and subjective norms) and Attitude toward Uncertainty emerged as the strongest predictors of intention. The Attitude toward Uncertainty appears to moderate intention in that participants with more negative attitudes toward uncertainty are more likely to undergo the test than those seeking more certainty.

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Authors

  • Dejana Braithwaite

  • Stephen Sutton

  • Naomi Steggles

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