Obesity is usually considered to be an important risk factor when associated with cancer screening. A new study at the Thomas Jefferson University makes an attempt at expanding the scope of obesity as a cancer screening factor, by pointing out that race as well as gender plays a role in this.
The analysis says that obesity is associated with higher rates of prostate cancer screening across all races or ethnic differences. In addition to this, it can also be linked to lower rates of cervical cancer screening, most evidently in white females. This study mainly focused on colorectum, prostate, breast, and cervical cancer.
“Numerous studies have suggested that obesity constitutes an obstacle to cancer screening, but a deeper examination also considering the role of race/ethnicity and gender in the equation has not been done before. A greater understanding of the relationship between cancer screening and obesity, race/ethnicity and gender can also help explain the association between obesity and increased cancer mortality,” conveyed Heather Bittner Fagan, MD, FAAFP MPH, lead author and associate professor, Thomas Jefferson University and director of Health Services Research, department of Family and Community Medicine, Christiana Care Health System.
In case of cervical cancer, escalating weight could be related to lower use of Pap smear. Black women of high socioeconomic status displayed almost no or very weak association here. On the other hand, rising obesity showed an increase in prostate cancer screening level. This was supported by data which showed three of four overweight men being screened for prostate cancer, as opposed to their normal weight counterparts. The study also considered breast cancer screening, which showed no relation between weight and mammography use in women.
The findings of this study have been published in the Journal of Obesity.