Social determinants of prostate cancer in the Caribbean: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Brown, Catherine R 
Hambleton, Ian 
Hercules, Shawn M 
Unwin, Nigel 
Murphy, Madhuvanti M 

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            Prostate cancer remains the leading cause of cancer deaths among Caribbean men. However, little data exists on the influence of social factors on prostate cancer in the Caribbean setting. This article supports the 2011 Rio Political Declaration on addressing health inequalities by presenting a systematic review of evidence on the role of social determinants on prostate cancer in Caribbean men. It aims to determine the distribution, by known social determinants of health, of the frequency and adverse outcomes of prostate cancer among Caribbean populations.
            Observational studies reporting an association between a social determinant and prostate cancer frequency and outcomes were sought in MEDLINE, EMBASE, SciELO, CINAHL, CUMED, LILACS, and IBECS databases. Fourteen social determinants and 7 prostate cancer endpoints were chosen, providing 98 possible relationship groups exploring the role of social determinants on prostate cancer. Observational studies with > 50 participants conducted in Caribbean territories between 2004 and 2016 were eligible. The review was conducted according to STROBE and PRISMA guidelines. Random-effects meta-analyses were performed.
            From 843 potentially relevant citations, 13 articles from 9 studies were included. From these included studies, 24 relationships were reported looking at 11 distinct relationship groups, leaving 90 relationship groups (92% of all relationship groups) unexplored. Study heterogeneity and risk of bias restricted results to a narrative synthesis in most instances. Meta-analyses showed more diagnosed prostate cancer among men with less formal education (n = 2 studies, OR 1.60, 95%CI 1.18–2.19) and among men who were married (n = 3 studies, OR 1.54, 95%CI 1.22–1.95).
            This review highlights limited evidence for a higher occurrence of diagnosed prostate cancer among Caribbean men with lower levels of education and among men who are married. The role of social determinants on prostate cancer among Caribbean men remains poorly understood. Improvements in study quantity and quality, and reduced variability in outcomes and reporting are needed. This report represents the current evidence, and provides a roadmap to future research priorities for a better understanding of Caribbean prostate cancer inequalities.