A faith- and community-based approach to identifying the individual at risk for head and neck cancer in an inner city.

The Laryngoscope

PubMedID: 23401194

Carter JM, Winters RD, Lipin R, Lookabaugh S, Cai D, Friedlander PL. A faith- and community-based approach to identifying the individual at risk for head and neck cancer in an inner city. Laryngoscope. 2013;123(6):1439-43.
OBJECTIVES/HYPOTHESIS
To perform a subset analysis of faith- and community-based screening events to further identify at-risk populations for head and neck cancer in hopes of further focusing screening efforts.

STUDY DESIGN
Prospective cohort study.

METHODS
Three hundred fifty-three individuals (n=353) presented to community events and self-selected for head and neck cancer screenings. A subgroup analysis focusing on risk factors for the development of head and neck cancer and for poor overall prognosis was performed. Subgroups analyzed were individuals screened at church-affiliated events, social events, or community outreach events at homeless shelters. Statistical analysis was performed using one-tailed analysis of variance test.

RESULTS
The outreach group had more risk factors for development of cancer, and a significantly higher proportion who used tobacco (P<.05) and consumed >1 drink/day (P<.05). Those in the outreach and church groups had a greater number of risk factors for a poor prognosis with and neck cancer in comparison with the social group: number of uninsured subjects (P<.05), fewer subjects with private insurance (P<.05), fewer subjects with a primary care provider (P<.05), and more subjects with a reported barrier to care (P<.05).

CONCLUSIONS
Inhabitants of homeless shelters represent a particularly vulnerable population for both the development and poor prognosis of head and neck cancer. Members of urban church groups are also an at-risk subpopulation due to the prevalence of poor prognostic risk factors. These groups may benefit from future targeted screenings for head and neck cancer.