Codes and Frequencies
CANOTHR identifies sample adults who had ever been told that they had some kind of cancer other than those kinds specified on the survey form. Those sample adults who reported ever being told by a doctor or other health professional that they had cancer or a malignancy of any kind (CANCEREV) were asked the follow-up question, "What kind of cancer was it?"
Interviewers marked up to three kinds of cancer specified on the survey form, and noted when the respondent mentioned more than three types of cancer. The 1997-2000 Field Representative's Manual directed, "Count the same type of cancer or malignancy on different body parts as only one kind. For example, malignant moles on the face, neck, and trunk should be counted as only one kind of cancer." Interviewers were further directed to not read the answer categories on the survey form to respondents. If the respondent used a technical term not on the form, then the interviewer was to "ask what part of the body this affected and enter that"; if the answer did not fit a category on the form, then the interviewer was to mark "other" and write down the response.
The coded responses to "What kind of cancer was it?" were the basis of a series of dichotomous variables, each indicating whether a particular type of cancer was mentioned by a respondent who was ever diagnosed with cancer.
The term "other kind of cancer" refers to a type of cancer other than the following specific types of cancer, each of which was the subject of a separate dichotomous variable:
- bladder cancer (CNBLAD)
- blood cancer (CNBLOD)
- bone cancer (CNBONE)
- brain cancer (CNBRAN)
- breast cancer (CNBRES)
- cervical cancer (CNCERV)
- colon cancer (CNCOLN)
- esophageal cancer (CNESOP)
- gallbladder cancer (CNGALL)
- kidney cancer (CNKIDN)
- larynx-windpipe cancer (CNLARX)
- leukemia (CNLEUK)
- liver cancer (CNLIVR)
- lung cancer (CNLUNG)
- lymphoma (CNLYMP)
- melanoma (CNMELN)
- mouth, lip, or tongue cancer (CNMOTH)
- ovarian cancer (CNOVAR)
- pancreatic cancer (CNPANC)
- prostate cancer (CNPROS)
- rectal cancer (CNRECT)
- (non-melanoma) skin cancer (CNSKNM)
- skin cancer of an unknown type (CNSKDK)
- soft tissue (muscle or fat) cancer (CNSOFT)
- stomach cancer (CNSTOM)
- testicular cancer (CNTEST)
- throat-pharynx cancer (CNTHRO)
- thyroid cancer (CNTHYR)
- uterine cancer (CNUTER)
Those who mentioned having been diagnosed with more than three types of cancer are identified in CNKIND3.
Interviewers asked the additional follow-up question, "How old were you when [this cancer] was first diagnosed?" This information was again collected for up to three specific types of cancer. Age at first diagnosis of some kind of cancer other than those specified above is reported in CNOTHRAG.
From 2008 to 2011, specific cancer diagnosis variables with a frequency count less than 4 were removed from the public use file for confidentiality reasons. From 2012 forward, cancer diagnosis variables with a frequency count less than 20 and those considered clinically rare according to the National Institute of Health's list of rare diseases were removed from the public use file. Individuals whose specific cancer diagnosis information was suppressed had their value of CNOTHR recoded to "Mentioned" (2). Because cancers that meet those criteria change from year to year, the kinds of cancers suppressed from the public file and subsequently included in the frequency count of CNOTHR change from year to year.
- 1987: Half of sample adults aged 18+ who were told they had cancer.
- 1997-2018: Sample adults aged 18+ who were ever told they had cancer.
- 1987, 1997-2018
- 1987, 1997-2018 : SAMPWEIGHT