Poor Knowledge of Colorectal Cancer in Brunei Darussalam

  • Chong, Vui Heng (Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Medicine, RIPAS Hospital) ;
  • Lim, Ai Giok (Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Medicine, RIPAS Hospital) ;
  • Baharudin, Hana Naqiyah (Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Medicine, RIPAS Hospital) ;
  • Tan, Jackson (Department of Renal Medicine, RIPAS Hospital) ;
  • Chong, Chee Fui (Department of Surgery, RIPAS Hospital)
  • Published : 2015.05.18


Background: Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the most common gastrointestinal cancer and the incidence is increasing in many developing countries. While it can be detected early and even prevented through screening and removal of premalignant lesions, there are barriers to screening which include low level of knowledge and awareness of CRC. This study assessed the level of knowledge of CRC in Brunei Darussalam. Materials and Methods: A total of 431 (262 male and 161 female) subjects participated in this questionnaire study. Subjects were scored on their knowledge of signs/symptoms (maximum 10 correct answers) and known risk factors for CRC (maximum 10 correct answers) and were categorised into poor (0-2), moderate (3-4) and satisfactory (5-10). Comparisons were made between the various patient factors. Results: Overall, 54.1% could not name any CRC signs/symptoms or associated risk factors. Most were not aware of any screening modalities. The overall scores for CRC signs/symptoms and risk factors were $1.3{\pm}1.39$ (range 0-6) and $0.6{\pm}1.05$ (range 0-5) respectively. Overall, the breakdown of scores was: poor (78.1%), moderate (20.3%) and satisfactory (6.2%) for signs/symptoms and poor (93.2%), moderate (6.2%) and satisfactory (0.7%) for risk factors. Higher level of education, female gender and non-Malay race were associated with higher scores for both signs/symptoms and knowledge of screening modality; however the overall scores were low. Conclusions: Our study showed that the general knowledge of CRC in Brunei Darussalam is poor. Being female, with higher levels of education and non-Malay race were associated with higher scores, but they were still generally poor. More needs to be done to increase the public knowledge and awareness of CRC.


Brunei;colorectal cancer;knowledge;symptoms;screening


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