Z Gastroenterol 2008; 46: 47-51
DOI: 10.1055/s-2007-963489

© Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Gender Differences in FOBT Use: Evidence from a Large German Survey

M. Sieverding1 , U. Matterne1 , L. Ciccarello1
  • 1Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg, Germany
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26. März 2008 (online)


We examined prevalence and correlates of fecal occult blood testing (FOBT) uptake in a sample of men and women aged 50 to 70 years without a personal history of cancer (n = 15 810). The data was collected in 2004 through the Health Care Access Panel (HCAP), a nationally generalizable survey of German households. A pronounced gender difference in FOBT use emerged. Women reported regular use more often, while men reported irregular use with a higher frequency. Nearly every third men (29.6 %), compared to 17.5 % of the women had never made use of FOBT. The influence of socioeconomic factors on FOBT uptake was negligible. Family history of cancer was significantly associated with FOBT but the effect was very small. Use of medical checkups and physician recommendation were the most important predictors of FOBT use in men and women. Gender differences in use of medical checkups and physician recommendation to undergo an examination for the early detection of cancer partly mediated the gender differences in FOBT use.


Monika Sieverding

Department of Psychology, Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg

Hauptstr. 47 - 51

69117 Heidelberg


Telefon: ++ 49/62 21/54 73 72

Fax: ++ 49/62 21/54 73 25

eMail: monika.sieverding@psychologie.uni-heidelberg.de