Cancer Care

Filipino American women, including the elderly, have the second highest incidence and the highest mortality rate for breast cancer compared with other Asian American ethnic groups. Established risk factors include obesity, acculturation and the adoption of westernized diet and behaviors. Filipino American men, including the elderly, have the highest incidence and death rate from prostate cancer among Asian American groups. They also have the second highest incidence and the highest mortality rate from lung cancer among Asian American groups. Filipino Americans have among the lowest screening rates and incidence for colorectal cancer among Asian American groups (McCracken, 2007).

Filipinos have the second poorest five-year survival rates for colon and rectal cancers of all US ethnic groups (Miller, 1996).

“Foreign-born Asians, including Filipinos, have an approximately 35% higher rate of non-small-cell lung cancer than US-born Asians. This fact may be due to the increased prevalence of smoking habits among Foreign-born Asian men compared to their US-born Asian men counterparts.”

In regards to other cancer, the incidence of liver cancer in Filipino populations is higher than rates among Caucasians (Cooper, 1997). [MSG2] They also have shortest and worst survival rates for gastric cancer (instead of bladder cancer) compared to other Asian ethnic groups and their Caucasian counterparts (Kim, 2009). Finally, Filipino populations have the shortest median survival and worse survival for bladder cancer compared to other Asian ethnic groups (Hashibe, 2003).

Foreign-born Asians, including Filipinos, have an approximately 35% higher rate of non-small-cell lung cancer than US-born Asians. This fact may be due to the increased prevalence of smoking habits among Foreign-born Asian men compared to their US-born Asian men counterparts. For foreign-born Asian women, environmental tobacco or non-tobacco exposure puts them at a higher risk for non-small cell lung cancer. (Raz, 2008).