Relationship of Health Literacy and Social Support with Health-Promoting Behaviors in Women with Breast Cancer: Mediating Role of Cancer Self-Efficacy

Ameneh Etemadi Asl (1), Sasan Bavi (2), Reza Johari Fard (3)
(1) Department of Psychology, Ahvaz Branch, Islamic Azad University, Ahvaz, Iran, Iran, Islamic Republic of,
(2) Department of Psychology, Ahvaz Branch, Islamic Azad University, Ahvaz, Iran, Iran, Islamic Republic of,
(3) Department of Psychology, Ahvaz Branch, Islamic Azad University, Ahvaz, Iran, Iran, Islamic Republic of


Background: Women diagnosed with breast cancer experience high levels of psychological disorders ranging from depression, anxiety, maladjustment to the disease, and decreased self-confidence to different emotional disturbances and fears of recurrence and mortality. The present study aimed to investigate the mediating role of cancer self-efficacy in the relationship between health literacy and social support with health-promoting behaviors in women with breast cancer.

Methods: In this descriptive-correlational study, the convenience sampling method was employed to select 282 women diagnosed with breast cancer in Ahvaz, Khuzestan Province (Iran) in 2021. The participants were asked to answer the Health-Promoting Lifestyle Profile II (HPLP-II), Iranian Health Literacy Questionnaire, Social Support Survey, and Cancer Behavior Inventory. Path analysis was adopted to analyze data in AMOS software.

Results: The results revealed there was a significant relationship between perceived social support with health-promoting behaviors (P=0.004) and cancer self-efficacy (P=0.001) in women with breast cancer. There was a significant relationship between health literacy and cancer self-efficacy in women. According to the results, the mediating role of cancer self-efficacy in the relationship between perceived social support and health literacy with health-promoting behaviors was found to be significant in women with breast cancer (P=0.001).

Conclusion: Accordingly, the research model had a desirable fit. The findings of this research showed the effective role of cancer self-efficacy in the outcome of social support and health literacy to increase health-promoting behaviors in women with breast cancer.

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Ameneh Etemadi Asl
Sasan Bavi (Primary Contact)
Reza Johari Fard
Ameneh Etemadi Asl, Sasan Bavi, Johari Fard R. Relationship of Health Literacy and Social Support with Health-Promoting Behaviors in Women with Breast Cancer: Mediating Role of Cancer Self-Efficacy. Arch Breast Cancer [Internet]. 2023 Oct. 31 [cited 2024 May 23];10(4):361-9. Available from:

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