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Publication Abstract

Authors: Hay J, Kaphingst KA, Baser R, Li Y, Hensley-Alford S, McBride CM

Title: Skin cancer concerns and genetic risk information-seeking in primary care.

Journal: Public Health Genomics 15(2):57-72

Date: 2012

Abstract: BACKGROUND: Genomic testing for common genetic variants associated with skin cancer risk could enable personalized risk feedback to motivate skin cancer screening and sun protection. METHODS: In a cross-sectional study, we investigated whether skin cancer cognitions and behavioral factors, sociodemographics, family factors, and health information-seeking were related to perceived importance of learning about how (a) genes and (b) health habits affect personal health risks using classification and regression trees (CART). RESULTS: The sample (n = 1,772) was collected in a large health maintenance organization as part of the Multiplex Initiative, ranged in age from 25-40, was 53% female, 41% Caucasian, and 59% African-American. Most reported that they placed somewhat to very high importance on learning about how genes (79%) and health habits (88%) affect their health risks. Social influence actors were associated with information-seeking about genes and health habits. Awareness of family history was associated with importance of health habit, but not genetic, information-seeking. CONCLUSIONS: The investment of family and friends in health promotion may be a primary motivator for prioritizing information-seeking about how genes and health habits affect personal health risks and may contribute to the personal value, or personal utility, of risk information. Individuals who seek such risk information may be receptive to interventions aimed to maximize the social implications of healthy lifestyle change to reduce their health risks.

Last Modified: 03 Sep 2013