Socioeconomic Factors Impact Colon Cancer Outcomes in Diverse Patient Populations

Wendy Lee, Rebecca Nelson, Brian Mailey, Marjun Philip Duldulao, Julio Garcia-Aguilar, Joseph Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


Purpose: Cancer disparities among racial and ethnic groups are major public health concerns. Our objective was to examine the impact of socioeconomic status (SES) on survival of colon cancer patients within major racial and ethnic groups. Methods: Patients with colon adenocarcinoma from Los Angeles County (LAC) were assessed. SES was utilized as an indicator of healthcare access and categorized by tertiles (high, middle, and low). Patient characteristics were compared and survival analyses were performed. Results: In our heterogeneous LAC cohort, we confirmed survival disparities. Asians had the best survival followed by Hispanics, whites, and blacks. For each stage of disease, Asians and Hispanics had better outcomes than whites and blacks. Then, we evaluated the impact of SES on survival within each racial and ethnic group. We observed significantly longer survival for high SES patients compared to middle and low SES patients for all racial/ethnic groups. Conclusions: While disparities across racial/ethnic groups are well-documented, our study is the first to identify socioeconomic disparities in survival for patients within the same group. These novel findings demonstrate the complex role of SES on race and ethnicity and identify the need to improve healthcare access even within select populations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)692-704
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Gastrointestinal Surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2012


  • Colon cancer
  • Disparities
  • Ethnicity
  • Race
  • Socioeconomic status

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Gastroenterology


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