Published in Cancer Detection and Prevention 2004; 28(3).
Hepatitis B testing among Vietnamese American menaDivision of Public Health Sciences, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, P.O. Box 19024, Seattle, WA 98109-1024, USA; bDepartment of Health Services, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, USA; cComprehensive Cancer Center, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA; dDepartment of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA; eInternational Community Health Services, Seattle, WA, USA; fHarborview Medical Center, Seattle, WA, USA; gDepartment of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, USA
Vietnamese American men are over 10 times more likely to be diagnosed with liver cancer than their white counterparts. This health disparity is attributable to high rates of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection. Our study objective was to examine factors associated with HBV testing among Vietnamese men. A population-based survey was conducted in Seattle. The questionnaire content was guided by an earlier qualitative study and the Health Behavior Framework. The survey was completed by 345 men (response rate: 80%). About one-third (34%) of the respondents reported they had not been tested for HBV. The following factors were associated (P < 0.01) with previous testing in bivariate comparisons: having a regular source of care and regular provider; knowing that HBV can be spread during childbirth; believing HBV can cause liver cancer; and doctor(s) had recommended testing as well as had asked doctor(s) for testing. Three variables were independently associated with HBV testing in a logistic regression model: regular source of care (OR = 4.5; 95% CI = 2.67.9), physician recommendation (OR = 2.3, 95% CI = 1.34.0), and knowing HBV can be spread during childbirth (OR = 2.1; 95% CI = 1.23.9). Low levels of HBV testing remain a public health problem in some Vietnamese American sub-groups. Health education about HBV transmission may stimulate patients to seek testing. Intervention programs should specifically target Vietnamese men without a regular source of health care and physicians who serve Vietnamese communities.