A recent study found that Latinos were less likely to get screened for colon cancer than whites. The California study also found that knowledge of their family history widened the Latino-white gap in colorectal cancer screening among adults.
While racial/ethnic disparities were more evident in colorectal cancer screening, the authors found no significant breast cancer screening disparities by race/ethnicity or income in the family history risk groups.
The researchers were unsure of the reasons the Latinos in the study had or had not gotten screened, but believe it may be due to communication issues and fear and anxiety about being screened.
Heather Orom, who was not part of this study, but studies racial disparities in cancer at the University at Buffalo, said, “It seems very plausible that this is not happening for Latinos because of access barriers and language barriers.” Adding, “we don’t know if those messages about family history and risk are resonating culturally with Latinos.”