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Cancer Causes Control. 2014 May;25(5):605-14. doi: 10.1007/s10552-014-0365-7. Epub 2014 Mar 18.

Racial disparities in healthy behaviors and cancer screening among breast cancer survivors and women without cancer: National Health Interview Survey 2005.

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Department of Epidemiology, College of Public Health and Health Professions and College of Medicine, University of Florida, 2004 Mowry Rd, Gainesville, FL, 32610, USA,



We investigated racial disparities in healthy behaviors and cancer screening in a large sample from the US population.


This analysis used the data from 2005 National Health Interview Survey and included women at age ≥ 40 years who completed the cancer questionnaires (2,427,075 breast cancer survivors and 57,978,043 women without cancer). Self-reported information on cancer history, healthy behaviors (body mass index, smoking, alcohol use, physical activity, fruit/vegetable consumption, sunscreen use) was collected. We compared distributions of each factor among Caucasian, African American, and Hispanic women with and without breast cancer history.


Caucasian breast cancer survivors as compared to their cancer-free counterparts were less likely to be current smokers (8.3 vs. 16.9 %, p < 0.001) and to have regular mammograms (51.5 vs. 36.9 %, p < 0.05). Differences in associations between cancer survivors and respondents without cancer among African American and Hispanic women did not reach statistical significance.


Certain breast cancer survivor groups can benefit from tailored preventive services that would address concerns related to selected healthy behaviors and screening practices. However, most of the differences are suggestive and do not differ by race.

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