Researchers have found that people identified as a sexual minority are less likely to ever go through a Pap test than heterosexuals. The results of the study were published in the journal Cancer. According to the scientists, the results of the study were consistent between certain sexual minority groups, which reported the lowest adoption among Hispanic sexual minorities.
“Our team consists of people dedicated to health inequality as well as people dedicated to gynecological cancer research. We wanted to expand on what we knew in this case to identify how inequality in cervical cancer research could be exacerbated by looking at multiple identities persecuted by our society, ”said Ashley E. Stenzel, PhD, MS, Alina Health-researcher Minneapolis Dr.
While conducting the study, investigators used data from the National Health Interview Survey between 2015 and 2018 to assess differences in cervical cancer screening among 877 pregnant women aged 21 to 65 without a history of hysterectomy who reported their sexual orientation and pap. Test history. In addition, the team of scientists compared these sexual minorities with heterosexual individuals (n = 17,760), adjusting for the difference in confusing variables between groups using score-based inverse probability of treatment weight determination.
The researchers found that sexual minorities were significantly less likely to undergo Pap tests. Furthermore, both white and Hispanic sexual minorities were less likely to pass the Pap test than white heterosexual individuals when researchers considered sexual orientation and ethnicity. However, researchers did not notice any significant differences between white heterosexuals and black or Hispanic heterosexuals.
“Our analysis showed that most people who identified themselves as belonging to a sexual minority group received less cervical cancer screening, but it was more pronounced in both Hispanic and sexual minority groups,” Stenzel said.
According to Stenzel, these results are extremely worrying, as cervical cancer screening can reduce the severity of the disease.
“We need to continue to examine inequalities at the juncture of multiple socially oppressed identities, how systemic inequalities play a role in these inequalities, and the additional barriers that individuals face in accessing cancer screening. Together, they can guide institutional and policy level changes to better serve this population, “he added.