Geographic Access to Mammography and Its Relationship to Breast Cancer Screening and Stage at Diagnosis: A Systematic Review

Jenna A. Khan-Gates, Jennifer L. Ersek, Jan M. Eberth, Swann A. Adams, Sandi L. Pruitt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Introduction: A review was conducted to summarize the current evidence and gaps in the literature on geographic access to mammography and its relationship to breast cancer-related outcomes. Methods: Ovid, Medline, and PubMed were searched for articles published between January 1, 2000, and April 1, 2013, using Medical Subject Headings and key terms representing geographic accessibility and breast cancer-related outcomes. Owing to a paucity of breast cancer treatment and mortality outcomes meeting the criteria (N = 6), outcomes were restricted to breast cancer screening and stage at diagnosis. Studies included one or more of the following types of geographic accessibility measures: capacity, density, distance, and travel time. Study findings were grouped by outcome and type of geographic measure. Results: Twenty-one articles met the inclusion criteria. Fourteen articles included stage at diagnosis as an outcome, five included mammography use, and two included both. Geographic measures of mammography accessibility varied widely across studies. Findings also varied, but most articles found either increased geographic access to mammography associated with increased use and decreased late-stage at diagnosis or no association. Conclusion: The gaps and methodologic heterogeneity in the literature to date limit definitive conclusions about an underlying association between geographic mammography access and breast cancer-related outcomes. Future studies should focus on the development and application of more precise and consistent measures of geographic access to mammography.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)482-493
Number of pages12
JournalWomen's Health Issues
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Maternity and Midwifery


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