Document Type : Articles


1 Department of Medical Library & Information Science, School of Allied Medical Sciences, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Medical Library and Information Science, School of Allied Medical Sciences, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

3 Center for Healthcare Data Modeling, Departments of Biostatistics and Epidemiology, School of public health, Shahid Sadoughi University of Medical Sciences, Yazd, Iran.


Health information-seeking behavior is how to search, find and use disease-related information, information about health-threatening factors and activities related to health promotion. One of the issues affecting people's quality of life is chronic diseases, of which cancer can be mentioned. Cancer incidence is rising over the last years . It cannot be stated for sure that the Fear and concern about cancer which is named carcinophobia,  always cause a lack of follow-up and avoidance of people seeking cancer information; however, considering different time intervals and in different cultures, the same Fear and concern as the stimulus, stimulates or forces the people to track and seek cancer information.The purpose of this analytical survey was clarifying the situation of Health information-seeking behaviour among university students both undergraduate and postgraduate as academic population during cancer outbreak. Also our aim is to  determine the relationship between carcinophobia and information-seeking behavior in this population. Research findings while clarifying the situation of Health information seeking behavior in the academic population, can indicate that carcionphobia causes more information search or is a barrier to information search. The samples of this analytical survey include 243  college students who were selected by cluster-class methodology. The research tool was derived from the Cancer Information Questionnaire Levin (L_CIS). Pearson correlation test was used for the relationship between variables. The results showed that the average total score of students' fears of the disease was 27.20, which was high and the main motive for the search for cancer health information was the protection of personal hygiene(56.4%). " Knowing how to treat cancer (54.7%) and the awareness of new trends in medicine (44.5%) were in the second and third rankings of the purpose and motivation of the search for information. Three components including "Lack of effective communication with Treatment staff  (such as physicians or nurses), "Lack of mastery in searching or finding of health information resources" and "Lack of mastery in the use of print or online health information resources" in average were the most important problems and barriers to obtaining the required information resulting from Fear of cancer. With increasing Fear of cancer, people's willingness to search for information through friends and watching TV shows increased, but the severe, and morbid Fear of cancer reduced the desire of individuals to seek health information.


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