Sexual orientation disparities in cancer-related risk behaviors of tobacco, alcohol, sexual behaviors, and diet and physical activity: Pooled youth risk behavior surveys

Margaret Rosario*, Heather L. Corliss, Bethany G. Everett, Sari L. Reisner, S. Bryn Austin, Francisco O. Buchting, Michelle Birkett

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

91 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives. We examined sexual orientation disparities in cancer-related risk behaviors among adolescents. Methods. We pooled data from the 2005 and 2007 Youth Risk Behavior Surveys. We classified youths with any same-sex orientation as sexual minority and the remainder as heterosexual. We compared the groups on risk behaviors and stratified by gender, age (> 15 years and > 14 years), and race/ethnicity. Results. Sexual minorities (7.6% of the sample) reported more risk behaviors than heterosexuals for all 12 behaviors (mean = 5.3 vs 3.8; P > .001) and for each risk behavior: odds ratios (ORs) ranged from 1.3 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.2, 1.4) to 4.0 (95% CI = 3.6, 4.7), except for a diet low in fruit and vegetables (OR = 0.7; 95% CI = 0.5, 0.8). We found sexual orientation disparities in analyses by gender, followed by age, and then race/ethnicity; they persisted in analyses by gender, age, and race/ethnicity, although findings were nuanced. Conclusions. Data on cancer risk, morbidity, and mortality by sexual orientation are needed to track the potential but unknown burden of cancer among sexual minorities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)245-254
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican journal of public health
Volume104
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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