264965 Disparities in Cancer-Related Risk Behaviors by Sexual Orientation in Adolescents: Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS)

Wednesday, October 31, 2012 : 11:00 AM - 11:15 AM

Margaret Rosario, PhD , Department of Psychology, The City University of New York - City College and Graduate Center, New York, NY
Heather L. Corliss, MPH, PhD , Division of Adolescent/Young Adult Medicine, Boston Children's Hospital, Boston, MA
Sari L. Reisner, MA , The Fenway Institute, Fenway Health and Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA
Bethany Everett, PhD , University of Colorado at Boulder, Boulder, CO
Francisco Buchting, PhD , Program Services Division, ETR Associates, Scotts Valley, CA
S. Bryn Austin, ScD , Division of Adolescent/Young Adult Medicine, Boston Children's Hospital, Boston, MA
Michelle Birkett, PhD , Department of Medical Social Sciences, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, IL
Objective: We examined disparities in several risk behaviors for cancer in sexual-minority (SM) adolescents relative to heterosexuals. Method: We pooled YRBS data from 14 states and 2 years (2005/2007, weighted N>34,000), examining tobacco and alcohol use, sexual-risk behaviors, and diet and exercise. Sexual orientation was defined by sexual attraction or behavior. Recommended guidelines defined risk. Analyses involved t-test for mean differences and logistic regression for odd's ratios (OR). Results: SMs began smoking or drinking alcohol at younger ages (e.g., 12.4 vs. 13.0 for smoking, p<.0001) and more SMs recently (past month) smoked cigarettes or cigars or chewed tobacco. Although more heterosexuals had ever used alcohol (OR=0.79, 95%CI=.68-.92), more SMs recently drank (OR=1.79, 95%CI=1.66-1.94) and the mean frequency of recent binge drinking (5+ drinks) was higher for SMs (>5 vs. 2.5 days in the past month, p<.0001). Sexual risk (either sex before age 16 or sex at or after age 16 and > 1 lifetime partner) was elevated among the SMs (OR=2.4, 95%CI=2.15-2.54), as was recent numbers of partners, no condom use, and using drugs during sex. While more SMs met recommended guidelines for daily servings of vegetables and fruits (OR=0.61, 95%CI=0.53-0.71), more SMs had too low or too high BMIs, purged recently, and did not meet recommended guidelines for physical activity in the past week (ORs from 1.27-4.16, p<.0001). The extent to which age, gender, or ethnicity/race modifies the cancer-related disparities will be examined. Conclusion: SM adolescents may be at risk for developing various cancers and related co-morbidities in adulthood.

Learning Areas:
Diversity and culture
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
(1) Appreciate disparities in cancer-related risk behaviors by sexual orientation. (2) Consider how age, gender, and ethnicity/race may modify the disparities in cancer-related risk behaviors by sexual orientation. (3) Recognize the importance of addressing the cancer-related risk behaviors of sexual-minority young people by means of interventions. (4) Work to increase the awareness of the cancer-related risk behaviors of sexual-minority youth by cancer researchers, NCI, and other pertinent parties.

Keywords: Cancer Prevention, Gay

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I developed the idea, initiated and led all discussions about the topic, participated in construction of variables, and supervised or conducted data analysis.
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.