The effect of marriage on utilization of colorectal endoscopy exam in the United States

Jim P. Stimpson, Fernando Wilson, Shinobu Watanabe-Galloway, M. Kristen Peek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: This study examines the association between marriage and colorectal endoscopy exam, and whether this association varies by gender and financial benefits of marriage including improved access to health insurance and pooled family income. Methods: Representative survey data of the non-institutionalized United States population were used from the 2000, 2005, and 2008 National Health Interview Survey. Analyses targeted persons 50-85 years of age without a personal history of cancer and with complete information on all study variables (n= 21,760). Multivariate logistic regression was used to model marital status differences in the probability of undergoing a colorectal endoscopy exam with interaction effects used to model variation over time by gender, health insurance, and poverty level. Results: Married persons were more likely than unmarried persons to report ever having undergone a colorectal endoscopy exam (odds ratio [OR], 1.21; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.12-1.29), and the difference between married and unmarried persons in the probability of undergoing a colorectal endoscopy exam remained stable over time. Married persons were more likely than unmarried persons to report having undergone a colorectal endoscopy exam within the past 10 years (OR, 1.49; 95% CI, 1.15-1.95). For each survey year, married men were significantly more likely than women and unmarried men to report having undergone a colorectal endoscopy exam. For example, in 2008, 56% of married men reported having undergone a colorectal endoscopy exam, compared to 49% of unmarried men, 52% of married women, and 50% of unmarried women. Among persons with health insurance, married persons were significantly more likely than unmarried persons to have undergone a colorectal endoscopy exam. Among persons who were poor, there was no difference by marital status in the likelihood of having undergone a colorectal endoscopy exam. However, among persons who were not poor, married persons were more likely than unmarried persons to have undergone a colorectal endoscopy exam. Conclusion: Given that colorectal endoscopy exams are a potentially life-saving procedure, persistently higher uptake of colorectal endoscopy for married persons over time may be an important health promoting benefit of marriage. Therefore, clinicians and policy makers should focus on improving the use of cancer prevention services among unmarried persons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e325-e332
JournalCancer Epidemiology
Volume36
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2012

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Keywords

  • Colorectal cancer
  • Endoscopy
  • Health services
  • Marital status

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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