Personality and gastric cancer screening attendance: a cross-sectional analysis from the Miyagi Cohort Study

J Epidemiol. 2009;19(1):34-40. doi: 10.2188/jea.je20080024. Epub 2009 Jan 22.


Objective: To determine the associations between personality subscales and attendance at gastric cancer screenings in Japan.

Methods: A total of 21,911 residents in rural Japan who completed a short form of the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire-Revised (EPQ-R) and a questionnaire on various health habits including the number of gastric cancer screenings attended were included in the primary analysis. We defined gastric cancer screening compliance as attendance at gastric cancer screening every year for the previous 5 years; all other patterns of attendance were defined as non-compliance. We defined gastric cancer screening visiting as attendance at 1 or more screenings during the previous 5 years; lack of attendance was defined as non-visiting. We used logistic regression to estimate the odds ratios (ORs) of gastric cancer screening compliance and visiting according to 4 score levels that corresponded to the 4 EPQ-R subscales (extraversion, neuroticism, psychoticism, and lie).

Result: Extraversion had a significant linear, positive association with both compliance and visiting (trend, P < 0.001 for both). Neuroticism had a significant linear, inverse association with compliance (trend, P = 0.047), but not with visiting (trend, P = 0.21). Psychoticism had a significant linear, inverse association with both compliance and visiting (trend, P < 0.001 for both). Lie had no association with either compliance or visiting.

Conclusion: The personality traits of extraversion, neuroticism, and psychoticism were significantly associated with gastric cancer screening attendance. A better understanding of the association between personality and attendance could lead to the establishment of effective campaigns to motivate people to attend cancer screenings.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cohort Studies
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Japan / epidemiology
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Mass Screening
  • Middle Aged
  • Odds Ratio
  • Patient Compliance
  • Personality Inventory / statistics & numerical data
  • Personality*
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors
  • Rural Population
  • Stomach Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Stomach Neoplasms / psychology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires