Letters Section Editor: Stephen J. Lurie,
MD, PhD, Senior Editor.
To the Editor: The incidence of breast cancer
among Native Americans in the Southwest has nearly doubled in the last 30
years,1 and in the 1990s breast cancer represented
the most common cancer overall among all members of the Navajo Nation.2 Native Americans with breast cancer have significantly
lower 5-year survival rates when compared with the general population and
other minority groups,3,4 even
when adjusting for stage of cancer presentation. It is unclear whether these
worse outcomes for Native American women are related to the process of care
delivery or to underlying tumor biology. We studied patterns of breast cancer
care at Indian Health Service (IHS) hospitals on the Navajo Nation and evaluated
their association with adverse outcome.
Flum DR, Stuart S, Wilcox M. Processes and Outcomes of Care Among Navajo Women With Breast Cancer. JAMA. 2003;290(15):1996-1997. doi:10.1001/jama.290.15.1996-a