John S Luque https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8085-4641 Jonathan N Maupin https://orcid.org/0000-0003-2610-2737 Daron G Ferris


Cervical cancer remains one of the major cancers affecting women from developing countries, especially those from socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds. In the US, Hispanic immigrant women experience restricted access to health care and higher incidence rates of cervical cancer compared to the non-Hispanic white population. Knowledge of cervical cancer risk factors and symptoms is associated with greater interest in participating in regular cervical cancer screening. To explore knowledge and beliefs about cervical cancer, survey questionnaires were administered to Mexican immigrant women in southeast Georgia, US and to mestizo women - primarily Quechua language dominant speakers - in Cusco, Peru. As part of these survey studies, there was a list of 32 items asking participants to agree or disagree with whether certain symptoms or risk factors could cause cervical cancer and a pile sort of 15 of the most salient items. Cultural consensus analysis was used to calculate overall agreement with a cultural model of cervical cancer risk factor knowledge in each sample independently. For the Georgia sample, there was marginal consensus, but for the Peru sample, there was no consensus. Analysis of cultural competence values and residual agreement show significant differences across education in the Georgia study, with a positive correlation between education and cultural competence (r=0.50, p=0.001), but not in the Peru study. Likewise, the results of the pile sort data exhibited consensus for the Georgia sample for the cervical cancer risk factors, but not for the Peru sample. The lack of consensus among the Peru sample on either task suggests little widespread knowledge on risk factors of cervical cancer. Additional analyses related to factors associated with screening behaviors from the cultural cancer screening scale indicated more pronounced fatalistic beliefs and catastrophic disease expectations about cervical cancer among the Peruvian women compared to the Mexican immigrant women.