Systematic review of neighborhood socioeconomic indices studied across the cancer control continuum

Kristen A. Sorice, Carolyn Y. Fang, Daniel Wiese, Angel Ortiz, Yuku Chen, Kevin A. Henry, Shannon M. Lynch

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Background: There is extensive interest in understanding how neighborhood socioeconomic status (nSES) may affect cancer incidence or survival. However, variability regarding items included and approaches used to form a composite nSES index presents challenges in summarizing overall associations with cancer. Given recent calls for standardized measures of neighborhood sociodemographic effects in cancer disparity research, the objective of this systematic review was to identify and compare existing nSES indices studied across the cancer continuum (incidence, screening, diagnosis, treatment, survival/mortality) and summarize associations by race/ethnicity and cancer site to inform future cancer disparity studies. Methods: Using PRISMA guidelines, peer-reviewed articles published between 2010 and 2019 containing keywords related to nSES and cancer were identified in PubMed. Results: Twenty-four nSES indices were identified from 75 studies. In general, findings indicated a significant association between nSES and cancer outcomes (n = 64/75 studies; 85.33%), with 42/64 (65.63%) adjusting for highly-correlated individual SES factors (e.g., education). However, the direction of association differed by cancer site, race/ethnicity, and nSES index. Conclusions: This review highlights several methodologic and conceptual issues surrounding nSES measurement and potential associations with cancer disparities. Recommendations pertaining to the selection of nSES measures are provided, which may help inform disparity-related disease processes and improve the identification of vulnerable populations in need of intervention.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2125-2144
Number of pages20
JournalCancer Medicine
Issue number10
StatePublished - May 2022


  • cancer incidence
  • cancer mortality
  • cancer survival
  • health disparities
  • neighborhood deprivation index
  • socioeconomic status
  • systematic review


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