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Survival Lower in Hispanic Colorectal Cancer Patients

Hispanics present at younger age with more advanced disease than non-Hispanic Whites

WEDNESDAY, April 12 (HealthDay News) -- Hispanic patients in the United States tend to present with colorectal cancer at a younger age and more advanced disease and have significantly worse survival than non-Hispanic whites, according to a study in the April issue of the American Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Morton S. Kahlenberg, M.D., of the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, and colleagues reviewed data from 453 patients diagnosed with colorectal cancer between 1985 and 2001. The population was 65 percent Hispanic, 25 percent non-Hispanic white, 8 percent black, and 2 percent of unknown ethnicity.

The researchers found that compared with non-Hispanic whites, Hispanics presented at a significantly younger age (53.6 versus 58.5 years) and had significantly more stage IV disease (32 percent versus 19 percent). Hispanics also had significantly worse five-year and age-adjusted survival, with a median survival of 48 months for all ages compared with 92 months for non-Hispanic whites under 55 years old and 77 months for those over 55 years old. The two groups were similar in terms of tumor location, mode of presentation and adjuvant treatment.

"Hispanic patients with colorectal cancer in our catchment area present at a younger age with more metastatic disease and have a poorer survival than non-Hispanic whites," Kahlenberg and colleagues conclude. "Modification of screening criteria and treatment paradigms may be required for Hispanics."

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