Submitted: 13 Jul 2014
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Health Promot Perspect. 2014;4(1): 18-26.
doi: 10.5681/hpp.2014.003
PMID: 25097833
PMCID: PMC4122045
  Abstract View: 819
  PDF Download: 557

Original Research

Health Promoting Life-Style Behaviors and Systemic Inflamma­tion in African American and Caucasian Women Prior to Chemo­therapy for Breast Cancer

Debra E E Lyon * , Lathika Mohanraj, Debra Lynch Kelly, RK Elswick Jr


Background: Racial disparities in breast cancer outcomes persist, with differential adverse outcomes in African American women. Although research has ex­amined possible genetic differences, there has been little research on potentially modifiable characteristics such as health promoting behaviors. The purpose of this article is to describe the characteristics and to compare the differences by race in lifestyle factors and inflammatory biomarkers in African American and Caucasian women with breast cancer. Methods: This is a baseline descriptive analysis from an ongoing randomized controlled trial that includes 124 women diagnosed with early stage breast cancer prior to chemotherapy. Data sources included medical records, self-re­port questionnaires and a blood sample for measures of inflammation. The sta­tistical analysis included descriptive statistics and ANOVA models to determine differences between the two groups. Results: Overall, both groups had low levels of health promoting behaviors. African Americans had a significantly higher body mass index. Caucasian women consumed more alcohol. Levels of C-reactive protein and MIP-1β were significantly higher in African Americans. Conclusion: Potentially modifiable factors such as nutrition, physical activity and levels of inflammation warrant further attention.
Keywords: Breast cancer, biomarkers, lifestyle, disparities, C-reactive protein
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