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Had breast cancer, past year (Condition)

Codes and Frequencies

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CANBREASTYRC indicates whether the person had breast cancer in the past year. This variable is created with supplemental programming by the IPUMS NHIS staff from the pre-1997 condition records. For general information about IHIS variables (such as CANBREASTYRC) created from the pre-1997 condition records, see the User Note on Condition Records and Condition Variables.

Defining Breast Cancer Records and Identifying Persons with Breast Cancer

For all available years, persons who were asked a direct question about having breast cancer and who have a chronic breast cancer condition record are given a "Yes" code for CANBREASTYRC. Persons who were asked a direct question about having breast cancer but do not have a chronic breast cancer record are given a code of "No." Persons who were not asked a direct question about breast cancer, or for whom it is unknown whether they were asked such a question, are given a code of "NIU" (not in universe), regardless of whether they have a chronic breast cancer record.

For all available years (1984 to 1996), chronic breast cancer records were defined as those condition records with a code of "421" ("Malignant neoplasm of breast - female") in the variable C1CONDRC in the original NHIS public use files. This condition code value comes from NCHS's Diagnostic Recode C: Chronic Conditions and Impairments.

For all available years (1984-1996), CANBREASTYRC should be weighted with CONDWT4.

Related Breast Cancer Variables
The nearest equivalent of CANBREASTYRC for 1997 forward is CNBRES (Ever had cancer: Breast). However, researchers should use caution when comparing prevalence estimates derived from these two variables, as the reference period and manner of collecting information about breast cancer differs greatly between the two. CANBREASTYRC was created by recoding condition records that were generated in response to several different survey questions about health problems underlying disability, sick days, or contacts with health care practitioners in the past year. CNBRES, by contrast, is based on a direct question about whether the person ever had the condition breast cancer.


There are no comparability issues with CANBREASTYRC.


  • 1984-1996: Females living in 1/6 of households (who received Condition List 4).


  • 1984-1996