Factors associated with mammogram use in Korean American immigrant women

Mi Hwa Lee, Joseph R. Merighi, Hee Yun Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Objectives: In this study, we assessed breast cancer screening in Korean American immigrant women and identified factors associated with adherence to American Cancer Society mammography screening guidelines. Methods: We carried out a cross-sectional survey with 182 Korean American immigrant women in Los Angeles County, California. Andersen's Behavioral Model of Health Services Use guided this study's design and analysis. We used hierarchical logistic regression to identify predisposing, enabling, and need factors associated with mammography adherence. Results: Nearly all respondents (95.1%) had a mammogram at some point in their lifetime. Mammography adherence based on age was 22.2% (45-49 years), 29.0% (50-54 years), and 67.7% (55 years and older). The strongest correlates of mammogram adherence were having a regular primary care check-up and hearing about a mammogram experience from family members, friends, or neighbors. Awareness of free or low-cost mammogram service, family cancer history, and having fatalistic beliefs also were associated with mammogram adherence. Conclusions: The findings highlight the primacy of health education messages that emphasize the importance of regular check-ups and personal screening experiences to promote mammography use in this population. Additional research is needed to understand Korean American immigrant women's perspectives on breast cancer and breast cancer screening in relation to fatalism.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1075-1085
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican journal of health behavior
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study, as a part of the first author’s doctoral dissertation, was supported by the American Cancer Society (Doctoral Training Grants in Oncology Social Work DSW16-069-01-SW). We also would like to thank the Korean American immigrants who shared their time and experiences for this study. In addition, we are grateful for the help of Korean churches and Korean service centers in


  • Breast cancer screening
  • Fatalism
  • Korean American immigrant women
  • Mammography
  • Primary care


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