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Despite years of struggle by women's health activists against unnecessary hysterectomy, Black women still have higher hysterectomy rates than White women.

Despite years of struggle by women's health activists against unnecessary hysterectomy, Black women still have higher hysterectomy rates than White women. Researchers used a subset of the Coronary Artery Risk Development Young Adults Study (CARDIA), which examines risk factors for heart disease, to analyze data from 1,863 Black and White women from 2000-02. Three-quarters (78%) of the women undergoing hysterectomy were Black, 22% were White. Surprisingly, while Black women were more likely to have fibroids that White women, this difference did not explain the higher number of hysterectomies among the former group. The researchers could not attribute the racial differences to commonly measured psychosocial, socioeconomic, or other demographics. Biological differences, cultural factors, religious beliefs, and/or environmental attributes may also affect these rates. Researchers noted, however, that Black women's access to information about alternatives to hysterectomy particularly warrants further study.

American Journal of Public Health, FEBRUARY 2009
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Title Annotation:WOMEN'S HEALTH SNAPSHOTS
Publication:Women's Health Activist
Date:May 1, 2009
Words:148
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