Everyday People Matter

Racial Gap in Prognosis after Breast Cancer Remains

On Behalf of | Jul 28, 2021 | Breast Cancer

Between Black women and white women, there exists a strong racial disparity in the prognosis for breast cancer. Black women who suffer from breast cancer have worse outcomes compared to white women who suffer from the disease. Those disparities have been reduced over the past few years, thanks to greater awareness and other factors, but the gap continues.

A recent study tracked breast cancer survival rates among white, Black and Hispanic women. Overall, the study found that there was a drop in the number of deaths from the disease recorded across all groups. The improvement was the highest among Black and Hispanic women.

Over a period of time, there has been a narrowing of the gap in breast cancer survival outcomes. For instance, there is now almost no disparity in the breast cancer prognosis between white women and Hispanic women. However, Black women continue to suffer from higher death risks after their breast cancer diagnoses.  In that case, the death rate was approximately twice as high as that for white women.

Black women may experience disadvantages that cause these disparities.  For instance, black women may have fewer opportunities for breast cancer screening or may be unable to access critical mammography services in time.  This may cause delayed detection increasing the risk of disease progression.  Access to appropriate treatment may be limited, and this  may worsen outcomes.