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J Natl Med Assoc. Jan 2007; 99(1): 72-80, 85-7.
PMCID: PMC2569600

A spatial-temporal approach to surveillance of prostate cancer disparities in population subgroups.


BACKGROUND: Prostate cancer mortality disparities exist among racial/ethnic groups in the United States, yet few studies have explored the spatiotemporal trend of the disease burden. To better understand mortality disparities by geographic regions over time, the present study analyzed the geographic variations of prostate cancer mortality by three Texas racial/ethnic groups over a 22-year period. METHODS: The Spatial Scan Statistic developed by Kulldorff et al was used. Excess mortality was detected using scan windows of 50% and 90% of the study period and a spatial cluster size of 50% of the population at risk. Time trend was analyzed to examine the potential temporal effects of clustering. Spatial queries were used to identify regions with multiple racial/ethnic groups having excess mortality. RESULTS: The most likely area of excess mortality for blacks occurred in Dallas-Metroplex and upper east Texas areas between 1990 and 1999; for Hispanics, in central Texas between 1992 and 1996: and for non-Hispanic whites, in the upper south and west to central Texas areas between 1990 and 1996. Excess mortality persisted among all racial/ethnic groups in the identified counties. The second scan revealed that three counties in west Texas presented an excess mortality for Hispanics from 1980-2001. Many counties bore an excess mortality burden for multiple groups. There is no time trend decline in prostate cancer mortality for blacks and non-Hispanic whites in Texas. CONCLUSION: Disparities in prostate cancer mortality among racial/ethnic groups existed in Texas. Central Texas counties with excess mortality in multiple subgroups warrant further investigation.

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Selected References

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