Associations of Demographic and Socioeconomic Factors with Stage at Diagnosis of Breast Cancer


Background: Stage at diagnosis is one of the most important prognostic factors of breast cancer survival.Because in the breast cancer case this may vary with socioeconomic characteristics, this study was performedto recognize the relationship between demographic and socioeconomic factors with stage at diagnosis in Iran.Materials and
Methods: This cross-sectional, descriptive study conducted on 526 patients suffering from breastcancer and registered in Cancer Research Center of Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences from 2008 to2013. A reliable and valid questionnaire about family levels of socioeconomic status filled in by interviewing thepatients via phone. For analyzing the data, Multinomial logistic regression, Kendal tau-b correlation coefficientand Contingency Coefficient tests were executed by SPSS22. Economic status, educational attainment of patientand household head and/or a combination of these were considered as parameters for socioeconomic status.First, the relationship between stage at diagnosis and demographic and socioeconomic status was assessed inunivariate analysis then these relationships assessed in two different models of multinomial logistic regression.
Results: The mean age of the patients was 48.3 (SD=11.4). According to the results of this study, there weresignificant relationships between stage at diagnosis of breast cancer with patient education (p=0.011), living place(p=0.044) and combined socioeconomic status (p=0.024). These relationships persisted in multiple multinomiallogistic regressions. Other variables, however, had no significant correlation.
Conclusions: Patient education,combined socioeconomic status and living place are important variables in stage at diagnosis of breast cancerin Iranian women. Interventions have to be applied with the aim of raising women’s accessibility to diagnosticand medical facilities and also awareness in order to reducing delay in referring. In addition, covering breastcancer screening services by insurance is recommended.