The association of rurality and breast cancer stage at diagnosis: a national study of the SEER cancer registry


  • Abstract

    Patients from rural areas have lower breast cancer screening rates than urban patients.

    We found that a greater proportion of rural patients received an initial breast cancer diagnosis at a late stage compared with urban patients and that patients living in remote small rural counties had the highest rate of late-stage breast cancer at diagnosis. Breast cancer survival is known to be worse for rural patients compared to urban, and late stage at diagnosis may be a contributing factor. These disparities are longstanding and suggest areas for further research, advocacy, policy changes, and patient education.  Further study is needed to identify appropriate screening availability in rural areas and the burdens that travel presents for patients where screening is not available.


  • Authors:

    Evans DV, Andrilla CHA, Yung, R

  • Journal/Publisher:

    WWAMI Rural Health Research Center, University of Washington

  • Edition:

    Oct 2021.

  • Documents:

    Policy Brief

  • Citation:

    Evans DV, Andrilla CHA, Yung, R. The association of rurality and breast cancer stage at diagnosis: a national study of the SEER cancer registry. WWAMI Rural Health Research Center, University of Washington, Oct 2021.

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