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Breast cancer incidence and neighbourhood income

Publication: Health Reports 2011:22(2)

Authors: Marilyn J. Borugian, John J. Spinelli, Zenaida Abanto, Chen Lydia Xu and Russell Wilkins

Data: Canadian Cancer Registry

In developed countries, women of higher socio-economic status often have higher breast cancer incidence rates, compared with women of lower socio-economic status.

This study examined the association between neighbourhood income and the diagnosis of female breast cancer.  Population data from the Canadian Cancer Registry were used to calculate national age-specific and age-standardized incidence rates of breast cancer from 1992 through 2004, by neighbourhood income quintile and region.

Residence in the lowest as opposed to the highest neighbourhood income quintile was associated with a 15% lower risk of being diagnosed with breast cancer.  To some extent, the greater risk of being diagnosed with breast cancer among women in higher income neighbourhoods may reflect lower parity and a higher prevalence of screening mammography.

Full article

For more information about this article, contact Marilyn Borugian(1-604-675-8058;, British Columbia Cancer Agency.