Disparities in the use of radiation therapy in patients with local-regionally advanced breast cancer

Steve R. Martinez, Shannon H. Beal, Steven L. Chen, Robert J Canter, Vijay P. Khatri, Allen Chen, Richard J Bold

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Background: Radiation therapy (RT) is indicated for the treatment of local-regionally advanced breast cancer (BCa). Hypothesis: We hypothesized that black and Hispanic patients with local-regionally advanced BCa would receive lower rates of RT than their white counterparts. Methods: The Surveillance Epidemiology and End Results database was used to identify white, black, Hispanic, and Asian patients with invasive BCa and ≥10 metastatic lymph nodes diagnosed between 1988 and 2005. Univariate and multivariate logistic regression evaluated the relationship of race/ethnicity with use of RT. Multivariate models stratified for those undergoing mastectomy or lumpectomy. Results: Entry criteria were met by 12,653 patients. Approximately half of the patients did not receive RT. Most patients were white (72%); the remainder were Hispanic (10.4%), black (10.3%), and Asian (7.3%). On univariate analysis, Hispanics (odd ratio [OR] 0.89; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.79-1.00) and blacks (OR 0.79; 95% CI, 0.70-0.89) were less likely to receive RT than whites. On multivariate analysis, blacks (OR 0.76; 95% CI, 0.67-0.86) and Hispanics (OR 0.80; 95% CI, 0.70-0.90) were less likely than whites to receive RT. Disparities persisted for blacks (OR 0.74; 95% CI, 0.64-0.85) and Hispanics (OR 0.77; 95% CI, 0.67-0.89) who received mastectomy, but not for those who received lumpectomy. Conclusions: Many patients with local-regionally advanced BCa do not receive RT. Blacks and Hispanics were less likely than whites to receive RT. This disparity was noted predominately in patients who received mastectomy. Future efforts at improving rates of RT are warranted. Efforts at eliminating racial/ethnic disparities should focus on black and Hispanic candidates for postmastectomy RT.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)787-792
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2010


  • Advanced
  • Breast cancer
  • Disparities
  • Ethnicity
  • Race
  • Radiation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Radiation
  • Cancer Research
  • Medicine(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Disparities in the use of radiation therapy in patients with local-regionally advanced breast cancer'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this