Journal Article
. 2012 Aug;30(25).
doi: 10.1200/JCO.2012.41.9564.

Factors associated with receipt of breast cancer adjuvant chemotherapy in a diverse population-based sample

Jennifer J Griggs 1 Sarah T Hawley  John J Graff  Ann S Hamilton  Reshma Jagsi  Nancy K Janz  Mahasin S Mujahid  Christopher R Friese  Barbara Salem  Paul H Abrahamse  Steven J Katz  
  • PMID: 22869890
  •     74 References
  •     26 citations


Purpose: Disparities in receipt of adjuvant chemotherapy may contribute to higher breast cancer fatality rates among black and Hispanic women compared with non-Hispanic whites. We investigated factors associated with receipt of chemotherapy in a diverse population-based sample.

Patients And Methods: Women diagnosed with breast cancer between August 2005 and May 2007 (N = 3,252) and reported to the Detroit, Michigan, or Los Angeles County Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) registry were recruited to complete a survey. Multivariable analyses examined factors associated with chemotherapy receipt.

Results: The survey was sent to 3,133 patients; 2,290 completed a survey (73.1%), and 1,403 of these patients were included in the analytic sample. In multivariable models, disease characteristics were significantly associated with the likelihood of receiving chemotherapy. Low-acculturated Hispanics were more likely to receive chemotherapy than non-Hispanic whites (odds ratio [OR], 2.00; 95% CI, 1.31 to 3.04), as were high-acculturated Hispanics (OR, 1.43; 95% CI, 1.03 to 1.98). Black women were less likely to receive chemotherapy than non-Hispanic whites, but the difference was not significant (OR, 0.83; 95% CI, 0.64 to 1.08). Increasing age (even in women age < 50 years) and Medicaid insurance were associated with lower rates of chemotherapy receipt.

Conclusion: In this population-based sample, disease characteristics were strongly associated with receipt of chemotherapy, indicating that clinical benefit guides most treatment decisions. We found no compelling evidence that black women and Hispanics receive chemotherapy at lower rates. Interventions that address chemotherapy use rates according to age and insurance status may improve quality of systemic treatment.

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