Background. In Haiti, breast cancer patients present at such advanced stages that even modern therapies offer modest survival benefit. Identifying the personal, sociocultural, and economic barriers-to-care delaying patient presentation is crucial to controlling disease. Methods. Patients presenting to the Hôpital Bon Sauveur in Cange were prospectively accrued. Delay was defined as 12 weeks or longer from initial sign/symptom discovery to presentation, as durations greater than this cutoff correlate with reduced survival. A matched case-control analysis with multivariate logistic regression was used to identify factors predicting delay. Results. Of N=123 patients accrued, 90 (73%) reported symptom-presentation duration and formed the basis of this study: 52 patients presented within 12 weeks of symptoms, while 38 patients waited longer than 12 weeks. On logistic regression, lower education status (OR = 5.6, P=0.03), failure to initially recognize mass as important (OR = 13.0, P<0.01), and fear of treatment cost (OR = 8.3, P=0.03) were shown to independently predict delayed patient presentation. Conclusion. To reduce stage at presentation, future interventions must educate patients on the recognition of initial breast cancer signs and symptoms and address cost concerns by providing care free of charge and/or advertising that existing care is already free. © 2013 Ketan Sharma et al.
Sharma, K., Costas, A., Damuse, R., Hamiltong-Pierre, J., Pyda, J., Ong, C. T., … Meara, J. G. (2013). The haiti breast cancer initiative: Initial findings and analysis of barriers-to-care delaying patient presentation. Journal of Oncology. https://doi.org/10.1155/2013/206367