212081 Understanding the unique social determinants of quality of life and research inclusion in young adult cancer survivors

Monday, November 9, 2009

Erin Elizabeth Kent, PhD , Office of Cancer Survivorship, National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, MD
Adolescents and young adults (AYAs) with cancer, defined by the National Cancer Institute as individuals between the ages of 15 and 39 at diagnosis, are a unique subpopulation on which comparatively little research attention has been paid. Although differences in survival among (AYA) diagnosed with cancer have been found to vary with neighborhood socioeconomic status (SES), very little work has been done on the specific individual-level barriers which may face this demographically diverse population. The following paper will present preliminary findings from the Socioeconomics and Quality of Life (SEQOL) study, a questionnaire-based study designed to elicit individual socioeconomic factors with may buffer the myriad of adverse consequences of being diagnosed with cancer during young adulthood. Results from focus groups and interviews with a subset of these patients will augment the discussion on the findings from the quantitative analyses. Finally, results of survival analyses conducted using California Cancer Registry data to investigate the effect of neighborhood SES will also be presented. Socioeconomic disparities appear to adversely influence survival of adolescents, and young adults with leukemia and lymphoma independently of race, ethnicity, gender, and several clinical parameters. The SEQOL study intends to examine the specific factors that might contribute to these disparities.

Learning Objectives:
1. Differentiate survival trends among adolescents and young adults with cancer by neighborhood socioeconomic strata and across race/ethnicities. 2. Identify possible individual-level barriers to maintaining overall positive quality of life in young adults diagnosed with cancer. 3. Discuss possible strategies for reducing or eliminating socioeconomic disparities in cancer outcomes for young adults.

Keywords: Health Disparities, Quality of Life

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a doctoral candidate workin on this topic for my dissertation.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.