Older Adult Health Issues: Cancer

Increased Rates of Incidence

Mills and Yang 1997) report that Hmong Americans in general have increased incidents of certain types of cancer, especially:

  • nasopharynx
  • cervix
  • stomach
  • liver
  • pancreas
  • leukemia
  • non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Too often, the cancer has progressed to an advanced stage and grade of disease by the time it is diagnosed.

Similarly, in a study of Hmong living in Minnesota, Ross and colleagues (2003) also report increased proportional incident ratios (PIRs) of cancer at the following sites:

  • nasopharyngeal
  • gastric
  • hepatic
  • cervical

Decreased Incidence Rates

In comparison to the general population Minnesota Hmong has decreased PIRs for:

  • prostate cancer
  • breast cancer
  • Hodgkin’s disease
  • melanoma