Explore UAB

Subscribe to Family & Community Medicine News

Subscribe to UAB Sports & Exercise Medicine

Sumayah Abed, M.D.Sumayah Abed, M.D.Assistant Professor Sumayah Abed, M.D., has received a grant from the UAB Faculty Development Grant Program for a project focused on associations between breast cancer and alcohol consumption.

The program provides faculty members with seed money for research, scholarship and creative activities in their discipline, intended for new efforts or projects for which money is not generally available.

Abed, a clinician at the UAB Hoover Family Medicine Clinic, will use the funding to build tools that assess physicians’ awareness of links between an increased risk of breast cancer and alcohol consumption and facilitate counseling for at-risk patients.

Alcohol consumption is one of two modifiable lifestyle factors that increase the risk of breast cancer, along with obesity. As a result, counseling patients about this risk is of paramount importance. However, not all physicians may be aware of such risk, and even those who are may not be able to provide related counseling given the time constraint of clinical encounters.

To date, no studies have been published assessing the level of awareness of primary care physicians (PCPs) regarding breast cancer risk from alcohol consumption. This project will fill this gap in research to better understand the landscape in family physicians’ awareness and counseling on alcohol and breast cancer. Methods will include questionnaires administered to primary care physicians in Alabama to assess awareness of the association between alcohol and breast cancer, current counseling practices, and barriers to providing such counseling.

The results from this survey will inform future interventions, such as education on the benefits of this type of counseling and assessments of feasibility by pre- and post-questionnaire.

“I have a passion for women’s health and I believe that the primary care setting is the ideal place to care for many women’s health needs and more importantly, the ideal setting for prevention,” Abed said.

Breast cancer is the most common cancer and the second leading cause of death in women. Low awareness among patients, mainly women, about the link between alcohol and breast cancer reflects indirectly the awareness about the risk among family physicians, she said.

“The Faculty Development Grand award will give me an opportunity to evaluate the current awareness of risk, and the practice of family physicians in counseling on this risk, and use this to inform an intervention and assess the feasibility of the intervention. This will hopefully improve the frequency and quality of such counseling.”

Subscribe to Family & Community Medicine News

Subscribe to UAB Sports & Exercise Medicine