Gender differences in correlates of colorectal cancer screening among black medicare beneficiaries in Baltimore

Kathryn A. Martinez, Craig E. Pollack, Darcy F. Phelan, Diane Markakis, Lee Bone, Gary Shapiro, Jennifer Wenzel, Mollie Howerton, Lawrence Johnson, Mary A. Garza, Jean G. Ford

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Background: Previous research has shown colorectal cancer (CRC) screening disparities by gender. Little research has focused primarily on gender differences among older Black individuals, and reasons for existing gender differences remain poorly understood. Methods: Weused baseline data from the Cancer Prevention and Treatment Demonstration Screening Trial. Participants were recruited from November 2006 to March 2010. In-person interviews were used to assess selfreported CRC screening behavior. Up-to-date CRC screening was defined as self-reported colonoscopy or sigmoidoscopy in the past 10 years or fecal occult blood testing in the past year. We used multivariable logistic regression to examine the association between gender and self-reported screening, adjusting for covariates. The final model was stratified by gender to examine factors differentially associated with screening outcomes for males and females. Results: The final sample consisted of 1,552 female and 586 male Black Medicare beneficiaries in Baltimore, Maryland. Males were significantly less likely than females to report being up-to-date with screening (77.5% vs. 81.6%, P = 0.030), and this difference was significant in the fully adjusted model (OR: 0.72; 95% confidence interval, 0.52-0.99). The association between having a usual source of care and receipt of cancer screening was stronger among males compared with females. Conclusions: Although observed differences in CRC screening were small, several factors suggest that gender-specific approaches may be used to promote screening adherence among Black Medicare beneficiaries. Impact: Given disproportionate CRC mortality between White and Black Medicare beneficiaries, genderspecific interventions aimed at increasing CRC screening may be warranted among older Black patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1037-1042
Number of pages6
JournalCancer Epidemiology Biomarkers and Prevention
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Oncology


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