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Marital status and stage at diagnosis of cutaneous melanoma
Results from the Surveillance Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) program, 1973-2006
Article first published online: 10 NOV 2010
Copyright © 2010 American Cancer Society
Volume 117, Issue 9, pages 1984–1993, 1 May 2011
How to Cite
McLaughlin, J. M., Fisher, J. L. and Paskett, E. D. (2011), Marital status and stage at diagnosis of cutaneous melanoma. Cancer, 117: 1984–1993. doi: 10.1002/cncr.25726
- Issue published online: 19 APR 2011
- Article first published online: 10 NOV 2010
- Manuscript Accepted: 20 SEP 2010
- Manuscript Revised: 27 AUG 2010
- Manuscript Received: 18 JUN 2010
- marital status;
- stage at diagnosis;
- late stage;
- single individuals
We evaluated the effect of marital status on risk of late-stage cutaneous melanoma diagnosis.
Information about melanoma patients was obtained from Surveillance Epidemiology and End Results (SEER), 1973-2006. A multivariable logistic regression model was used to estimate relative risks of late-stage disease at diagnosis.
After exclusion criteria, 192,014 adult melanoma patients remained for analyses. After adjustment for age, race, year of diagnosis, tumor histology, anatomic site, socioeconomic status, and SEER site, the relationship between estimated risk of late-stage melanoma diagnosis and marital status was dependent on sex (P < .0001 for interaction). Although unmarried patients had a higher risk of being diagnosed at a late stage among men and women, the magnitude of the effect varied by sex. Moreover, among married, single, and divorced or separated patients, men had more than a 50% increase in risk of late-stage diagnosis when compared with women. Widowed men and widowed women, however, were not statistically different in their stage at diagnosis.
Results from this study are important and may be used by clinicians and public health practitioners interested in increasing the proportion of melanoma patients diagnosed at an early stage through screening, perhaps by specifically targeting unmarried individuals in addition to having broad-based skin cancer prevention programs. Cancer 2011. © 2010 American Cancer Society.