Date of Award

7-27-2009

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)

Department

Public Health

First Advisor

Michael P. Eriksen - Chair

Second Advisor

Frances A. McCarty

Third Advisor

Russ Toal

Abstract

Lung cancer is the most common cause of cancer-related death. Most lung cancer is the result of a preventable cause, smoking. Nevertheless, U.S. tobacco production remains the fourth highest globally. This study examined the spatial aspects of U.S. White male lung cancer mortality and the associated risk factors of tobacco acreage, rural residence, smoking, poverty, lack of health insurance, and radon exposure. White male lung cancer mortality was significantly correlated with tobacco acreage (r = .455), rural residence (r = .389), and smoking (r = .475). Tobacco acreage (p = .005), rural residence (p = .011), and smoking (p = .030) remained significant with regression analysis. In qualitative analysis using a Geographic Information System, clustering was evident for all factors but only tobacco acreage correlated well spatially with White male lung cancer mortality. Tobacco-growing states were shown to have statistically higher lung cancer mortality 20 years later among White males. The causes for this mostly preventable cause of death need further investigation in order to target effective public health interventions.

Included in

Public Health Commons

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