Bladder cancer knowledge in the Lebanese population: When ignorance could be harmful

According to the latest data of the World Cancer Research Fund International (2012), Lebanon has the second highest age-standardized incidence rate of bladder cancer worldwide, both for "men" and "both-sexes" categories. This study was designed to assess bladder cancer knowledge among the Lebanese population. Between November 2017 and January 2018, a cross-sectional study was directed, including patients and visitors of one of the largest university hospitals in the capital Beirut. A face-to-face questionnaire evaluated knowledge regarding, among others, the most important risk factor for bladder cancer and the most frequent revealing symptom. This survey also obtained information regarding smoking habits. A total of 701 participants completed the survey. A total of 49.1% were younger than 50 years, 56.3% were male, 56.6% had a college degree and 54.4% were ever smokers. Two-hundred and thirty-two (33.1%) of the 701 surveyed individuals have never heard about bladder cancer. 157 (33.5%) of the 469 individuals who have heard about bladder cancer were unaware that bladder cancer is different from prostate cancer. Overall, 312 (44.5%) individuals have heard about bladder cancer and knew that it is different from prostate cancer. Of these 312 subjects, 94 (30.1%) knew that tobacco smoking was the most important risk factor for bladder cancer, 166 (53.2%) associated blood in the urine with the most frequent revealing symptom of this disease and 66 (21.2%) considered that bladder cancer is frequent in Lebanon compared to other cancers. This study suggests the lack of knowledge of the Lebanese population towards bladder cancer, including its association with tobacco.

Bulletin du cancer. 2018 Sep 26 [Epub ahead of print]

Tarek Souaid, Joya-Rita Hindy, Roland Eid, Hampig Raphael Kourie, Joseph Kattan

Saint-Joseph university, faculty of medicine, medical genetics unit, Beirut, Lebanon. Electronic address: ., Saint-Joseph university, faculty of medicine, medical genetics unit, Beirut, Lebanon., Saint-Joseph university, faculty of medicine, oncology department, Beirut, Lebanon., Saint-Joseph university, faculty of medicine, medical genetics unit, Beirut, Lebanon; Saint-Joseph university, faculty of medicine, oncology department, Beirut, Lebanon.