Socioeconomic inequalities in the use of radiotherapy for rectal cancer: A nationwide study
2011 (English)In: European Journal of Cancer, ISSN 0959-8049, E-ISSN 1879-0852, Vol. 47, no 3, 347-353 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Preoperative radiotherapy (PRT) in rectal cancer reduces the risk of local recurrence by at least half but the influence of the socioeconomic status of patients on the use of PRT is little investigated in Europe. METHODS: Individually attained data on civil status, education and income were linked to the Swedish Rectal Cancer Registry 1995-2005 (n=16,713) and analysed by logistic regression. RESULTS: Forty-six percentage of the patients received PRT and the crude rate varied with age, gender, civil status, education and income as well as with sublocalisation, stage, type of hospital and health care region. In a multivariate analysis, all civil status groups had PRT to a lesser extent compared with married patients; odds ratio (OR) for unmarried patients was 0.67 (95% confidence interval (CI) 0.59-0.76). Patients with secondary and university education had PRT to the same extent as those with compulsory school (OR 1.04 (0.94-1.15) and 0.92 (0.81-1.06)). The use of PRT was associated with income; OR for patients with income Q1 versus Q4 was 0.76 (0.67-0.86). The inequalities by civil status and income remained unchanged also in groups with a relatively stronger indication for adjuvant radiotherapy, i.e. younger patients and in low rectal cancer. CONCLUSION: Unmarried and low-income patients are at increased risk for not receiving PRT in rectal cancer. Comorbidity may explain some differences but increased awareness of the role of non-medical variables for the use of PRT is warranted.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. Vol. 47, no 3, 347-353 p.
Civil status, Education, Income, Radiotherapy, Rectal cancer
Medical and Health Sciences
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-125792DOI: 10.1016/j.ejca.2010.03.015ISI: 000287780900003PubMedID: 20456944OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-125792DiVA: diva2:321044