Examining potential gaps in supportive medication use for US and foreign-born Hispanic women with breast cancer.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

BACKGROUND: Compared to non-Hispanic Whites, Hispanic women are more likely to report pain, depression, and other mental health concerns. However, little is known about Hispanic women's use of supportive medications, and whether use differs depending on nativity (US- vs. foreign-born). This study's objectives were to examine patterns of supportive medication use and investigate potential differences by ethnicity/nativity among women with breast cancer. METHODS: We used the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results data linked with Medicare claims to identify women diagnosed with incident breast cancer between July 1, 2007, and December 31, 2011. Supportive medication use (opioid pain and non-opioid psychotropic medications) in the 90 days after diagnosis was the primary outcome. We categorized ethnicity/nativity as US-Born non-Hispanic, US-born Hispanic, foreign-born non-Hispanic, and foreign-born Hispanic. Modified Poisson models examined associations between ethnicity/nativity and medication use, adjusting for tumor, treatment, and demographic characteristics. RESULTS: We included 23,091 women, of whom 88% were US-born non-Hispanics, 4% US-born Hispanics, 6% foreign-born non-Hispanics, and 2% foreign-born Hispanics. Supportive medication use varied by ethnicity/nativity. Compared to US-born non-Hispanics, foreign-born Hispanics and non-Hispanics were 5% (95% CI 0.92-0.98) and 10% (95% CI 0.85-0.96) less likely to receive supportive medications, respectively. US-born Hispanics were 5% (95% CI 1.02-1.09) more likely to receive supportive medications. Observed differences persisted when analyses were limited to stage I-III breast cancer cases. CONCLUSIONS: This work highlights potential disparities in the pharmacologic treatment of psychosocial needs of foreign-born breast cancer patients. Future studies should explore if differences observed here are reflective of health disparities or differential patient preferences.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Pinheiro, LC; Check, DK; Rosenstein, D; Reeder-Hayes, KE; Dusetzina, S

Published Date

  • May 2019

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 27 / 5

Start / End Page

  • 1639 - 1646

PubMed ID

  • 30097792

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1433-7339

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1007/s00520-018-4406-8


  • eng

Conference Location

  • Germany