Dr. Kruse on the Effect of Socioeconomic Disparities on Survival Outcomes in Breast Cancer

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Megan Kruse, MD, discusses how socioeconomic disparities and access to health insurance can contribute to poorer overall survival (OS) outcomes in adolescent patients with invasive breast cancer.

Megan Kruse, MD, medical oncologist, Cleveland Clinic, discusses how socioeconomic disparities and access to health insurance can contribute to poorer overall survival (OS) outcomes in adolescent patients with invasive breast cancer.

A retrospective analysis of 18,018 adolescent or young adult patients with invasive breast cancer indicated that low socioeconomic status and public insurance was associated with decreased OS rates vs patients with a higher median income or those with private insurance. These data help identify specific patient populations that would benefit from improved treatment accessibility, Kruse says.

Additionally, this population is at higher-risk for developing aggressive breast cancer subtypes, such as triple-negative or HER2-positive disease. Further investigation into potential confounding variables may promote a better understanding of the relationship between social determinants and worsened survival outcomes, Kruse concludes.

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