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Year : 2007  |  Volume : 20  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 23

Application of the Health Belief Model for Osteoporosis Prevention among Middle School Girl Students, Garmsar, Iran

1 Department of Health Promotion and Education, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran
2 Semnan Health Center, Semnan, Iran

Correspondence Address:
S M Hazavehei
Hzar Jarib Ave., Department of Health Promotion and Education, School of Health, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 17647187

Introduction: Osteoporosis is a serious metabolic bone disorder that often results in hip fracture and is usually asymptomatic in its initial stages. Since the majority of bone formation occurs during childhood and adolescence, it is important to begin primary prevention at an early age, although the optimal way for instilling this preventive behavior in youth has not yet been defined. The purpose of this study was to assess the effectiveness of a health education intervention based on the Health Belief Model (HBM) in reducing the risk of osteoporosis development in female adolescents. Methods: The study population consisted of 206 female students from the middle schools of the city of Garmdsar, Iran. The students were randomly assigned to one of three groups. Students in Group 1, the experimental group, participated in two health education sessions of one hour, based on components of the HBM. Students in Group II took part in the traditional didactic health education curriculum on osteoporosis. Group III students had no specific educational program for osteoporosis prevention. Data were collected at three points: before the intervention, immediately after the intervention, and one month after the intervention. The data-gathering instrument was a validated and reliable questionnaire (67 questions) that was developed based on the following HBM domains: perceived susceptibility, perceived severity, perceived benefits, perceived barriers, cues to action, and health behavior action for osteoporosis prevention). Results: Group 1's pre-tests, post- tests and one month follow up tests revealed a significant increase in the students' mean scores in the domains of knowledge (about osteoporosis) (p<0.001), perceived susceptibility (p<0.001), perceived severity (p<0.001), and perceived benefits of reducing risk factors (p<0.001)), as well as taking health action (p<0.001). The mean scores of Group II only improved significantly in the domains of knowledge and perceived susceptibility (p<0.001). Group III showed no significant changes. Discussion and Conclusion: The findings of this study support the feasibility of a health education program based on HBM to induce behavior change for osteoporosis prevention in middle school females.

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