Background: Socioeconomic status (SES) is reflecting differences in sociodemographic factors affecting cancer survivorship. Deprived, low SES populations have a higher prevalence of multiple myeloma and worst survival, a condition which widens over time.
Methods: We performed a meta-analysis of 16 studies (registries and cohorts) reporting myeloma patients’ survival data according to SES. Ten studies reported Hazzard Ratio (H.R.) (95 % CI), and 16 studies reported p values. We combined the H.R. from 10 studies, and by using the Mosteller-Bush formula, we performed a synthesis of p values according to the area of the globe.
Results: Combination of H.R. from 10 studies including 85198 myeloma patients weighted to sample size of each study and adopting the hypothesis of random effect returned a combined H.R.: 1,26 (1,13-1,31) in favor of high SES patients. USA: Synthesis of p values coming from 6 studies (n=89807 pts) by using the Mosteller and Bush formula extracted a p-value of <0.0001 favoring high SES patients. Oceania: Synthesis of p values in two cohorts from Australia and New Zealand (n= 10196 pts) returned a p-value of 0,022 favoring high SES patients. Europe: The synthesis of p values from the U.K. and Greece studies (n=18533 pts) returned a p-value of <0,0001 favoring high SES patients. Asia: Synthesis of 2 studies from Asia (n=915 pts) returned a p-value of <0,0001 favoring high SES patients.
Conclusions: Across the globe and widening over decades, the socioeconomic status remains a gap for equality in myeloma care.