Background: Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the second leading cause of cancer related deaths in the United States. Underrepresented minorities suffer disproportionately from CRC largely because of disparities in CRC screening rates, particularly by endoscopic methods. This study evaluates the association between socioeconomic, medical and psychosocial factors and the use of endoscopy in low-income minority women. Methods: The participants were recruited from community health fairs, tenant association meetings, senior centers and local medical clinics. A survey instrument was administered to the minority women. Results: Eighty-one women age >50 were included in this analysis (44 African Americans and 37 Hispanics). The two ethnic groups were demographically similar. The factors associated with having had endoscopy were language spoken (English versus Spanish), physician recommendation, cancer cons and decisional balance (difference between cancer cons and cancer pros). When endoscopy was modeled as a function of decisional balance and language spoken, only decisional balance was a significant predictor of endoscopy. Conclusions: Physician recommendation and decisional balance have a tremendous influence on whether minority women undergo endoscopy. These data suggest that if physicians increase their communication with patients regarding the benefits of screening and address patients concerns, adherence with endoscopic CRC screening can be improved in minority women.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1361-1368
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of the National Medical Association
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2005


  • Colon cancer
  • Endoscopy
  • Minority
  • Screening
  • Women


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