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Exploring Racial/Ethnic Differences in Physical Activity and Behavioral Risk Factors among Cancer Survivors in Central Pennsylvania.: 1556 Board #8 May 31 100 PM - 300 PM

Calo, William, A.1; Bluethmann, Shirley1; Foo, Wayne1; Lengerich, Eugene1; Mama, Scherezade2; Segel, Joel2; Winkels, Renate1; Wiskemann, Joachim1; Schmitz, Kathryn, FACSM1

Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: May 2018 - Volume 50 - Issue 5S - p 375–376
doi: 10.1249/01.mss.0000536320.65565.a2
D-11 Thematic Poster - Physical Activity and Health Promotion in Cancer Survivors Thursday, May 31, 2018, 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM Room: CC-Lower level L100H

1Penn State College of Medicine, Hershey, PA.

2Penn State College of Health and Human Development, University Park, PA.

(No relevant relationships reported)

PURPOSE: Racial/ethnic disparities in physical activity and behavioral risk factors are widely reported among the U.S. adult population. Little is known, however, about whether these racial/ethnic differences exist among cancer survivors. To address this gap, we examined the associations between race/ethnicity and meeting ACSM physical activity guidelines and behavioral risk factors among cancer survivors.

METHODS: We analyzed cross-sectional data from 585 cancer survivors who reside in central Pennsylvania. Survivors were identified using the Pennsylvania Cancer Registry and were mailed a survey using Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance Survey-based items from May-September, 2017. We categorized race/ethnicity into: non-Hispanic whites (NHW; 89%), non-Hispanic blacks (NHB; 4%), Hispanics (4%), and others (3%). We classified respondents as participating in any physical activities/exercises, meeting aerobic guidelines (≥150 minutes/week), muscle-strengthening guidelines (≥2 times/week), or both guidelines. We also assessed whether participants were overweight/obese, current smokers, had multiple comorbid conditions, and perceived health status. Analyses were adjusted for sex, age, education, and income.

RESULTS: Sixty-seven percent reported participating in any physical activities in the past month. NHW reported higher levels of physical activity than NHB and Hispanics but these differences were not significant (p>.05). Neither race/ethnicity was associated (p>.05) with meeting aerobic guidelines, muscle-strengthening guidelines, or both. More NHB were overweight/obese than NHW or Hispanics but these differences were not significant (p>.05). Hispanics reported higher levels of smoking, however, race/ethnicity was not associated with smoking status (p>.05). All groups reported similar levels of comorbid conditions and perceived health status.

CONCLUSIONS: It was encouraging to find no evidence of racial/ethnic disparities in physical activity and behavioral risk factors in our sample. However, non-adherence to physical activity guidelines was high in all racial/ethnic groups. Future studies with more diverse samples are needed to further explore racial/ethnic differences in physical activity and their potential impact on cancer survivors’ health.

© 2018 American College of Sports Medicine