The mortality of gastric cancer is decreasing despite the increasing incidence in Korea. This can be explained by surgical technique development and early detection by endoscopic screening or upper gastrointestinal study.
A research article to be published on August 7, 2009 in the World Journal of Gastroenterology addresses this question. Although stomach cancer screening is effective for reducing mortality, it is under-utilized in Korea. To identify barriers for gastric cancer screening participation, A korea study group constructed a cross-sectional study, and analyzed the factors associated with participation in gastric cancer screening programs. In this study, using data from the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2005 (KNHANES III), a nationwide health-related survey in Korea, Four groups of individual or environmental level covariates were considered as potential associated factors.
This study revealed that those with low income, low education level and unhealthy behaviors tend to not comply with the gastric cancer screening recommendations. These findings indicate that targeted interventions are needed for vulnerable populations such as those with low income, low education level and unhealthy behaviors. In addition, public campaigns to improve attitudes to preventive medical evaluation could be powerful methods to increase gastric cancer screening participation.
Reference: Kwon YM, Lim HT, Lee K, Cho BL, Park MS, Son KY, Park SM. Factors associated with use of gastric cancer screening services in Korea. World J Gastroenterol 2009; 15(29): 3653-3659