SAN ANTONIO – Researchers at the Mays Cancer Center at UT Health San Antonio are studying what challenges Latino cancer survivors faced with their diagnosis.
The study is called “Avanzando Caminos (Leading Pathways): The Hispanic/ Latino Cancer Survivorship Study.”
“The goal of the study is really to look at what are some of the cultural, behavioral, psychosocial and biological factors that are impacting our Latino community,” said Amelie Ramirez, study co-principal investigator at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio and associate director of cancer outreach and engagement at the Mays Cancer Center.
The study is funded by a six-year, $9.8 million grant from the National Cancer Institute.
Ramirez, who is helping lead this study, said researchers want to understand what is contributing to different types of cancers Latinos are experiencing.
“We see higher rates, at least here in South Texas. Higher rates of liver cancer and stomach cancer that we’re not seeing in the general population and we’d like to understand that better,” Ramirez said.
The Mays Cancer Center is teaming up with the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami for the study. They will recruit 3,000 Latino cancer survivors from South Texas as well as South Florida.
Ramirez said they are looking for participants over the age of 18 and those who have not been in treatment within the last two years.
“We have a job to do to really inform other communities about how to better reach and provide the best treatment to our Latino cancer patients,” Ramirez said.
Ramirez said this information will be used to help future Latino cancer survivors heal, recover and reduce the chances of reoccurrence.
The Mays Cancer Center will be hosting a conference next year on advancing the science of cancer of Latinos. Ramirez said she hopes to share information from this study then.