Racial Disparity in Delivering Definitive Therapy for Intermediate/High-risk Localized Prostate Cancer: The Impact of Facility Features and Socioeconomic Characteristics.

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European urology


BACKGROUND: The gap in prostate cancer (PCa) survival between Blacks and Whites has widened over the past decade. Investigators hypothesize that this disparity may be partially attributable to differences in rates of definitive therapy between races.

OBJECTIVE: To examine facility level variation in the use of definitive therapy among Black and White men for localized PCa.

DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: Using data from the National Cancer Data Base, we identified 223 873 White and 59 262 Black men ≥40 yr of age receiving care within the USA with biopsy confirmed localized intermediate/high-risk PCa diagnosed between January 2004 and December 2013.

OUTCOME MEASUREMENTS AND STATISTICAL ANALYSIS: Multilevel logistic regression was fitted to predict the odds of receiving definitive therapy for PCa. Sensitivity and subgroup analyses were performed to adjust for inherent patient and facility-level differences when appropriate.

RESULTS AND LIMITATIONS: Eighty-three percent (n=185 647) of White men received definitive therapy compared with 74% (n=43 662) of Black men between 2004 and 2013. Overall rates of definitive therapy during that time increased for both White (81% vs 83%, p<0.001) and Black (73% vs 75%, p=0.001) men. However, 39% of treating facilities demonstrated significantly higher rates of definitive therapy in White men, compared with just 1% favoring Black men. Our study is limited by potential selection bias and effect modification.

CONCLUSIONS: After adjusting for sociodemographic and clinical factors, we found that most facilities favored definitive therapy in Whites. Health care providers should be aware of these inherit biases when counseling patients on treatment options for localized PCa. Our study is limited by the retrospective nature of the cohort.

PATIENT SUMMARY: We found significant differences in rates of radiation and surgical treatment for prostate cancer among White and Black men, with most facilities favoring Whites. Nonclinical factors such as treatment facility type and location influenced rates of therapy.

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