Women in less affluent areas of Chicago less likely to reside near mammography facility

October 29, 2012

Women in socioeconomically disadvantaged and less affluent areas of Chicago were less likely to live near a mammography facility with various aspects of care compared with women in less socioeconomically disadvantaged and more affluent areas. This finding could be a contributing factor to the association between disadvantaged areas and late-stage breast cancer diagnosis, according to data presented at the Fifth AACR Conference on The Science of Cancer Health Disparities, held Oct. 27-30, 2012.

"Other research has found that women living in disadvantaged neighborhoods are more likely to be diagnosed with more biologically aggressive forms of breast cancer," said Jenna Khan, M.P.H., a doctoral candidate in epidemiology at the University of Illinois at Chicago Division of Epidemiology and Biostatistics. "The disproportionate lack of access to high-quality screening for these women who may actually need it the most is likely to be contributing to racial and socioeconomic disparities in breast at diagnosis and survival."

Khan and colleagues, in collaboration with the Metropolitan Chicago Task Force, defined an index of social disadvantage from the 2010 census tract data on the percentage of families below the , families receiving public cash assistance or , unemployed persons and female-headed households with children.

They created an index of affluence based on the percentage of families with incomes of $100,000 or more, adults with at least a college education and adults with white-collar jobs.

Their data revealed that when compared with tracts considered to be less socially disadvantaged, more socially disadvantaged tracts were less likely to be located near any facility (47 percent versus 66 percent), facilities designated as American College of Radiology-accredited Centers of Excellence (BICOE; 7 percent versus 36 percent), facilities that offer diagnostic (44 percent versus 52 percent), facilities with at least one breast imaging-dedicated radiologist (31 percent versus 60 percent) and facilities with digital machines (32 percent versus 53 percent).

Similarly, those tracts designated as less affluent were less likely than more affluent tracts to be located near any facility (30 percent versus 77 percent), BICOE-designated facilities (1 percent versus 37 percent), facilities that offer diagnostic mammography (23 percent versus 61 percent), facilities with at least one breast imaging-dedicated radiologist (27 percent versus 71 percent) and facilities with digital machines (16 percent versus 61 percent).

"We recognize that geographic access is only one potential barrier in accessing facilities with quality mammography screening," Khan said. "Other factors, such as insurance status, beliefs about screening and competing priorities, also affect access and utilization of mammography screening."

The study was funded by the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Postbaccalaureate Training in Disparities Research Grant, awarded to the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Explore further: Mammography use up for US immigrants

Related Stories

Mammography use up for US immigrants

September 19, 2011
While mammography rates have improved among foreign-born women residing in the United States, these women are still less likely to have undergone breast cancer screening than native-born U.S. women.

New national poll: 89 percent of women said mammograms vital to their health

September 27, 2011
According to a recent poll of 1,000 American voters conducted for the American College of Radiology, nearly 9-in-10 women reported that having a regular mammogram gave them a feeling of control over their own health care. ...

Mammography-detected breast cancer in 40-49 year-olds has better prognosis

February 22, 2012
Based on a study of nearly 2,000 breast cancer patients, researchers at the Swedish Cancer Institute in Seattle say that, in women between the ages of 40 and 49, breast cancers detected by mammography have a better prognosis. ...

Rural women more likely to be diagnosed with most serious form of breast cancer

October 24, 2011
Women living in rural areas face unique challenges concerning health and wellness issues. Now, an MU researcher has found that rural women are more likely than women living in cities to be diagnosed with late-stage breast ...

Recommended for you

Could a green sponge hold cancer-fighting secrets?

July 27, 2017
A small green sponge discovered in dark, icy waters of the Pacific off Alaska could be the first effective weapon against pancreatic cancer, researchers said on Wednesday.

Stem cell therapy attacks cancer by targeting unique tissue stiffness

July 26, 2017
A stem cell-based method created by University of California, Irvine scientists can selectively target and kill cancerous tissue while preventing some of the toxic side effects of chemotherapy by treating the disease in a ...

Understanding cell segregation mechanisms that help prevent cancer spread

July 26, 2017
Scientists have uncovered how cells are kept in the right place as the body develops, which may shed light on what causes invasive cancer cells to migrate.

Study uncovers potential 'silver bullet' for preventing and treating colon cancer

July 26, 2017
In preclinical experiments, researchers at VCU Massey Cancer Center have uncovered a new way in which colon cancer develops, as well as a potential "silver bullet" for preventing and treating it. The findings may extend to ...

Compound shows promise in treating melanoma

July 26, 2017
While past attempts to treat melanoma failed to meet expectations, an international team of researchers are hopeful that a compound they tested on both mice and on human cells in a petri dish takes a positive step toward ...

Study may explain failure of retinoic acid trials against breast cancer

July 25, 2017
Estrogen-positive breast cancers are often treated with anti-estrogen therapies. But about half of these cancers contain a subpopulation of cells marked by the protein cytokeratin 5 (CK5), which resists treatment—and breast ...

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

tadchem
not rated yet Oct 29, 2012
The non-uniform distribution of mammography facilities among the population would seems to be more a function of the decisions made by those who choose to purchase, set-up, install, and operate the equipment than on the local demography per se. Given the expense involved, economic factors will inevitably contribute to the decision-making process in a major way.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.