Archives     Advertise     Editorial Calendar      Advertiser Index     Subscribe     Contact Us    


Gap in Breast Cancer Mortality Rates Between Black and White Women Has Narrowed Over Three Decades


 
Robert Hines, PhD, MPH

Bottom Line: For women diagnosed with breast cancer in Florida, breast cancer-specific mortality rates have decreased more among Black and Hispanic women than white women since 1990. Despite these advances, Black women still have double the five- and 10-year mortality rates of non-Hispanic white women.

Journal in Which the Study was Published: Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

Author: Robert Hines, PhD, MPH, associate professor of population health sciences at the University of Central Florida College of Medicine.

Background: On a national level, over the past several decades, the incidence of breast cancer diagnosis in Black women has been less than that for white women, and Black women have been more likely to be diagnosed with more advanced disease. Over time, incidence in Black women rose to nearly the same level as that of white women, an effect Hines attributes to targeted breast cancer surveillance in those populations.

Around 1990, breast cancer mortality rates began to decline, reflecting improved screening and the availability of new therapeutics, but the decline was far slower in Black women, Hines explained.

"Since the 80s, there's been increasing awareness of the disparities in breast cancer mortality and the troubling fact that they've grown over time," Hines said. "There's been a huge investment in decreasing or eliminating these disparities, but we wanted to see if it's been effective." Such initiatives have largely focused on improving screening education and availability for socioeconomically disadvantaged populations and racial and ethnic minorities.

How the Study Was Conducted: Hines and colleagues obtained records from the Florida Cancer Data System of over 250,000 women diagnosed with breast cancer from the years 1990-2015. Their sample set consisted of female patients who self-identified as non-Hispanic white (79.5 percent), non-Hispanic Black (10.5 percent), Hispanic white (9.7 percent), or Hispanic Black (0.3 percent). The researchers studied the cumulative incidence of breast cancer death as well as 5- and 10-year relative hazard rates for individuals in each group. They clustered patients based on year of diagnosis: 1990-1994, 1995-2004, and 2005-2015.

Results: Researchers found that for all racial and ethnic groups, mortality decreased gradually from 1990 to 2015. In non-Hispanic white women, 10-year mortality decreased from 20.6 percent in the first five years (1990-1994) to 14.0 percent in the final time period (2010-2015). In non-Hispanic Black women, 10-year mortality decreased from 36.0 percent to 25.9 percent.

In the most recent 10 years surveyed, there was no significant difference in five- or 10-year mortality rates between Hispanic white and non-Hispanic white women, data that Hines found both surprising and encouraging. But despite these advances, Hines stresses that Black women still have double the five- and 10-year mortality rates of non-Hispanic white women.

The results also hinted at possible factors underlying the continuing disparities. When the researchers normalized the mortality data based on age, insurance status, census-tract poverty, tumor stage and grade at diagnosis, and treatment received, the 10-year relative rate of breast cancer mortality for Black women--which was 102 percent higher than white women prior to normalization of data--decreased to 20 percent higher than white women.

Author's Comments: "Over the past three decades, we've seen an improvement in breast cancer survival for all women--especially for minority women--which is encouraging. However, in the most recent time period, non-Hispanic Black women have twice the rate of breast cancer death compared to non-Hispanic white women," Hines said. "We need to celebrate the progress we make, but we have a ways to go to produce equitable outcomes for women diagnosed with breast cancer."

As next steps, Hines and his team hope to pinpoint specific reasons for the continuing disparities, in order to advise future initiatives aimed at closing the gap. "In order to have the most impact, we need to tease out the individual factors that are most responsible," Hines said.

Study Limitations: Limitations of this study include incomplete data for a fraction of patients, especially at earlier time points, when some of the diagnostic criteria used often today were not commonly assessed. The study also excluded patients who identified as a race other than white or Black, or an ethnicity other than Hispanic.

Funding & Disclosures: This study was funded by the University of Central Florida College of Medicine. The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

 
Share:

Related Articles:


Recent Articles

AACR Establishes New Cancer Evolution Working Group

The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) announced the formation of its seventh and newest scientific working group, which will be dedicated to supporting cancer evolution research.

Read More

Global Dementia Cases Forecasted To Triple By 2050

New analysis shows a decrease in prevalence due to education countered by increase due to heart health risk factors

Read More

Blackburn, Feinstein Introduce Bill to Protect Access to Breast Cancer Screenings

U.S. Senators Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) and Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today introduced the Protecting Access to Lifesaving Screenings (PALS) Act of 2021, a bill to preserve coverage for routine breast cancer screening for women beginning at age 40.

Read More

CUMBERLAND PHARMACEUTICALS REPORTS 2.5M PATIENT DOSES DELIVERED, NO PRODUCT RECALLS, NO FDA ISSUES IN 2020

The company's 2020 sustainability report highlights its commitment to environmental, social and governance (ESG) activities

Read More

Mobile Mentor Named Winner of Microsoft's 2021 Partner of the Year for Modern Endpoint Management

Mobile Mentor announced they have been awarded the 2021 Global Partner of the Year Award for Modern Endpoint Management.

Read More

Alzheimer's Association Welcomes CMS Announcement of National Coverage Determination Analysis on Treatment for Alzheimer's Disease

On behalf of all those living with Alzheimer's disease, their caregivers, and their families, we appreciate the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) thoughtful consideration on coverage considerations for monoclonal antibodies targeting amyloid for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, including aducanumab, which was recently approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Read More

HCTec Acquires Talon Healthy IT Services

Healthcare IT firm adds industry-leading help desk service company to portfolio of solutions

Read More

The Seven Steps of Revenue Cycle for a Healthcare Practice

Revenue cycle management tracks patient revenue from the initial encounter with the healthcare system to payment of balance. Getting the seven steps of revenue cycle right helps providers avoid missteps that are costly to the bottom line.

Read More

Expanding Evidence-Based Care for Dementia

The Alzheimer's Association is on a mission to ensure care professionals have access to evidence-based training to ensure those with dementia receive quality care across all settings.

Read More

A Natural Leader

Nashville physician Dr. Ryan Mire to head nation's largest medical-specialty society.

Read More

Email Print
 
 

 

 


Tags:
None
Powered by Bondware
News Publishing Software

The browser you are using is outdated!

You may not be getting all you can out of your browsing experience
and may be open to security risks!

Consider upgrading to the latest version of your browser or choose on below: