Associations between Marital Status and Patient-Reported Physical and Mental Health among Breast Cancer Survivors in Georgia Open Access

Boing, Elaine A. (2017)

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Purpose : The purpose of this study was to compare patient-reported physical and mental health by marital status among breast cancer survivors survey participants in the State of Georgia.

Methods: This was a secondary analysis of data drawn from a survivorship needs assessment survey that included a convenience sample of female breast cancer survivors who had undergone treatment and who were residents of Georgia. Data collection took place from September to December 2014. Married and not married patients were compared with respect to self-reported physical and mental health status (excellent/very good, good, fair/poor) using ordinal logistic regression models. The association with age, race, and education was also assessed. The results of all models were expressed as odds ratios (OR) and the corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CI).

Results: A total of 389 breast cancer survivors were included in this analysis, with 250 (64%) married and 139 (36%) not married. Most participants were white, between 50 and 64 years of age, and had some college-level education. Compared to married participants, a higher proportion of the not married reported being in fair/poor health status (6.8% vs. 16.8% for physical health; 6.9% vs. 19.7% for mental health). There was interaction between marital status and race. Marital status was associated with endpoints of interest in whites (physical health: OR 3.11; 95% CI 1.90, 5.10; mental health: OR 2.89; 95% CI 1.74, 4.80) but not in blacks.

Conclusions: The observed race-specific associations between marital status and self-reported health among breast cancer survivors may reflect differences in social and family support systems. Both marital status and race should be considered when planning targeted interventions.

Table of Contents


Methods..... 3

Data source and study population.....3


Statistical analysis.....4

Results..... 6

Physical health status.....6

Mental health status.....7

Sensitivity analysis.....8

Discussion..... 9

Conclusion..... 12

References..... 13

Tables and figure..... 16

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