Mammography and clinical breast examination among Korean American women in two California counties

Prev Med. Jan-Feb 1998;27(1):144-51. doi: 10.1006/pmed.1997.0259.


Background: Mammography and clinical breast examination (CBE) are underutilized, especially by women from some racial/ethnic minorities. Few published studies of screening practices or correlates for these subgroups exist.

Methods: A population-based telephone survey of 1,090 Korean Americans living in two California counties was conducted. To produce population estimates of mammography and CBE testing, we adjusted frequencies to account for different selection probabilities. Multivariable logistic regression was performed to determine independent correlates of testing.

Results: Only 34% [95% confidence intervals (CI) 30%, 39%] of Korean American women age 50 and older were estimated to have had a mammogram in the past 2 years. Only 32% (95% CI 28%, 37%) had had a CBE in the past 2 years. The strongest independent correlate of testing was having a regular medical checkup [odds ratio (OR) for mammogram = 9.21, 95% CI 3.98, 21.35; OR for CBE = 11.58, 95% CI 4.71, 28.46].

Conclusions: These estimates are lower than the Healthy People 2000 objectives as well as published estimates for other populations in the United States. Planning and implementing tailored programs to improve screening are best done using a community-sensitive approach, which, because racial/ethnic subgroups are growing, will assume increasing public health importance.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Asian Americans / statistics & numerical data*
  • Breast Neoplasms / ethnology*
  • Breast Neoplasms / prevention & control
  • California
  • Employment
  • Female
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Korea / ethnology
  • Logistic Models
  • Mammography / statistics & numerical data*
  • Marital Status
  • Mass Screening / statistics & numerical data*
  • Middle Aged
  • Palpation