International Journal of Family Medicine / 2015 / Article / Tab 6

Research Article

Does the Primary Care Experience Influence the Cancer Diagnostic Process?

Table 6

Factors associated with symptoms-to-investigation and investigation-to-diagnosis times ().

First symptoms-to-investigation timeInvestigation-to-diagnosis time
Hazard ratio2 valueHazard ratio2 value

Cancer site (ref.: breast)
Symptom urgency (ref.: yes)
Sex (ref.: male)
Age11.010.268 1.000.762
Education level (ref.: primary or secondary)
 College or university1.050.7441.030.808
Accessibility at the usual source of PHC11.060.2231.130.004
Continuity at the usual source of PHC10.950.4851.000.997
Comprehensiveness at the usual source of PHC11.110.0521.010.828
Correspondence between point of entry into investigation and usual source of PHC (ref.: usual source of PHC = point of entry)
 Usual source of PHC ≠ point of entry0.910.5421.400.023
 No source of PHC1.710.4734.000.036

In these models, age and experience of care indices are continuous variables.
2For the Cox regression regarding first symptoms-to-investigation time, the origin of the time-scale of the analysis was the date of first symptoms and the exit point was the start of investigation. For the analysis of investigation-to-diagnosis time, the origin of the time-scale of the analysis was the start of the investigation and the exit point was the disclosure of the diagnosis. A hazard ratio greater than one indicates a shorter time, that is, that the event (investigation, for the symptoms-to-investigation time, and diagnosis, for the investigation-to-diagnosis time) occurred more rapidly.
Note: results were similar for models including level of morbidity or type of PHC clinic as covariates, for models excluding symptom urgency, and for analyses performed for the subgroup of patients who had used their usual source of PHC as point of entry into cancer investigation.