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Cancer Causes Control. 2002 Oct;13(8):719-28.

Cancer prevention behaviors and socioeconomic status among Hispanics and non-Hispanic whites in a rural population in the United States.

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Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA 98109, USA.



Socioeconomic status is explored as a predictor of differences between Hispanics and non-Hispanic Whites in cancer prevention behavior.


In a cross-sectional study, in-person interviews (n = 1795) were conducted in a population-based random sample of adults in 20 communities with a high proportion of Hispanics.


Hispanics were significantly less likely than non-Hispanic Whites to ever have had cervical (p < 0.001), breast (p = 0.007), or colorectal cancer (FOBT p = 0.008; sigmoidoscopy/colonoscopy p < 0.002) screening. After adjusting for socioeconomic status (education and having health insurance), only differences in cervical cancer remained significant (p = 0.024). After adjusting for socioeconomic status, Hispanics had a significantly higher intake of fruits and vegetables per day (4.84 servings) than non-Hispanic Whites (3.84 servings) (p < 0.001); and fat behavior score was marginally significant after adjustment for socioeconomic status (p = 0.053). Significantly fewer Hispanics were current smokers than non-Hispanic Whites (p < 0.001).


There is only limited support for the hypothesis that socioeconomic status is a major determinant of some cancer-related behaviors; specifically, socioeconomic status is related to mammography and colorectal screening, but not cervical cancer, dietary behavior, or smoking.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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