Are patients of low socioeconomic status receiving suboptimal management for pancreatic adenocarcinoma?

Authors


Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The objective of this study was to define the effects of socioeconomic status (SES) and other demographic variables on outcomes for patients with pancreatic adenocarcinoma.

METHODS:

Florida cancer registry and inpatient hospital data were queried for pancreatic adenocarcinoma diagnosed from 1998 to 2002.

RESULTS:

In total, 16,104 patients were identified. Low SES (LSES) patients were younger at diagnosis (P < .001) but presented with similar disease stage and tumor grade. LSES patients were less likely to receive surgical extirpation (16.5% vs 19.8%; P < .001), chemotherapy (30.7% vs 36.4%; P < .001), or radiotherapy (14.3% vs 16.9%; P = .003). Among surgical patients, 30-day mortality was significantly higher (5.1% vs 3.7%; P < .001) and overall median survival was significantly worse (5.0 months vs 6.2 months; P < .001) in the LSES cohorts. Although surgical patients who were treated at teaching facilities (TF) did significantly better; an increased 30-day surgical mortality (2.2% vs 1.3%; P < .001) and decreased median survival (5 months for poverty level >15% vs 6.2 months for poverty level <5%; P < .001) also were observed for patients of LSES. In a multivariate analysis that corrected for patient comorbidities, significant independent predictors of a poorer prognosis included LSES (hazard ratio [HR], 1.09); treatment at a non-TF (HR, 1.09); and failure to receive surgical extirpation (HR, 1.92), chemotherapy (HR 1.41), or radiation (HR 1.25).

CONCLUSIONS:

Patients of LSES were less likely to receive surgical extirpation, chemotherapy, or radiation and had significantly higher perioperative and long-term mortality rates. A greater understanding of the barriers to providing optimal care and identifying means for improving successful delivery of therapies to the poor with pancreatic cancer are needed. Cancer 2010. © 2009 American Cancer Society.

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