How can women protect themselves from treatment delays?
This month marked the release of sobering new research on breast cancer and changes in mammogram guidelines.
The new study, published Oct. 13 in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention
, found of more than 100,000 women diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010 and 2011, African-American and Hispanic women were more likely to be diagnosed at later stages. African-American women had a much higher risk of the disease being discovered at the most advanced, deadly stage. And African-American and Hispanic patients were up to 40 percent more likely to receive treatment not in line with breast cancer guidelines.
Advocates are more troubled than surprised by these findings. “Sadly, we’re well aware of these disparities,” says Brian Smedley, executive director of the National Collaborative for Health Equity. “Too often, the reaction is, ‘Here we go again – another study showing persistent disparities.'”