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How do traditional values affect a woman's likelihood to utilize prevention screening techniques?

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Why are women of Mexican descent at high risk for breast cancer?

What are the risk factors?

Why do so many women feel uncomfortable performing the BSE or having a medical checkup?

Why do so many women feel healthy?


Familismo is a value in which Mexicans are taught the family comes first. Mexican children are socialized to understand that the needs of the family take precedence over the needs of the individual (Villa 37).

Jerarquismo is a value of respect. In which Mexican children are taught to understand the ˇ°hierarchical social structuresˇ± of the family (Villa 38).

Personalismo places value on ˇ°interpersonal relations and social interactions in which individuals deal with each other as caring, complete personsˇ± versus impersonal roles.

Women of Mexican descent place emphasis on interpersonal relations by inquiring about their friend's and family's well being, family, health, etc. Women of Mexican descent think that interpersonal relations are very important because they illustrate trust, respect, and dignity for one's self, but also for others, in one's social interactions.

Personalismo requires the building of trust, respect, pride and dignity, in any personal relationship, but especially in the physician patient relationship and delivery of health care. The physician patient relationship isn't built overnight, but with time (Villa 39). Women of Mexican descent don't trust doctors or the healthcare system right away, but build it with time. Personalismo can affect the screening behavior of women of Mexican descent because they don't automatically trust their health care provider or doctor. Trust is a large component of the physician patient relationship and if woman of Mexican descent doesn't trust her physician she is likely to refuse consent for procedures or to carry out follow up procedures, such as prevention screening for breast cancer.

Familismo emphasizes a women's traditional role as the caretaker. They generally are the last one to receive medical care because they are the caretaker for their families. Familismo can affect a woman's screening behavior because as the caretaker they are the last ones to receive care, so in some cases this results in the lack there of prevention screening.

Jeraquismo emphasizes a women 's traditional familial role to respect the authority of their husband or male relatives. In traditional families, many times women won't consent to treatment without their husband's consent, which can include prevention screening. If a woman's husband doesn't think the treatment is important he is likely not to consent.


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