Factors Associated with Intention to Perform Fecal Occult Blood Test among Medical Professionals: An Application of the Protection Motivation Theory

Mohaddeseh Emadi Azam, Saeed Bashirian, Akram Karimi Shahanjarini, Majid Barati



Colorectal cancer is one of the most preventable cancers. Regular screening behaviors play an important role in reducing the incidence and deaths of this cancer. Therefore, in the present study we aimed to determine the factors associated with intention to perform fecal occult blood test (FOBT) among medical professionals using the protection motivation theory (PMT).


Materials and Methods:

 This descriptive-analytical study was conducted on 240 employees aged over 50 years in Hamadan University of Medical Sciences in 2018 using multistage random sampling. The data were collected using a questionnaire including demographic information and PMT constructs. Data were analyzed using SPSS software version 16. Chi-square and linear regression tests were used as appropriated.



 In this study, 22.8% of the participants reported a history of FOBT. There was a significant correlation between the referring to the doctor for intestinal disease and performing FOBT (P<0.05). Based on the PMT, perceived self-efficacy (β=0.439) and response efficiency (β=0.48) were predictive of protection motivation (intention) to conduct FOBT. In total, different structures of the PMT explained 24.6% of the variation of intention changes (R2=0.226).



Due to the low frequency of screening behavior among staff, the emphasis on the importance of early diagnosis of cancer is necessary. Also, consideration of perceived self-efficacy and the effectiveness of screening behaviors in designing staff training programs are recommended for increasing the intention to perform screening behaviors.


Colorectal cancer, Protection motivation theory, Fecal occult blood test, Staff

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