Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation





First Advisor

Dr. Jennifer Hatcher


African Americans bear a disproportionately high burden of cancer incidence and mortality in this country. The purpose of this dissertation was to investigate factors associated with African-American men, who are incarcerated, making informed health decisions about participation in prostate cancer screening, as well as exploring factors that reduce modifiable risk factors for cancer. The United States incarcerates more people per capita than any country in the world and African American men are overrepresented in the U.S. prison system

This dissertation is composed of three manuscripts. The first paper reviews the current literature about the factors that influence African-American males in making informed decisions about whether to participate in prostate cancer screening. The second paper uses existing data from a sample of 129 incarcerated African American men to examine the value of an intervention aimed at reducing modifiable risks for cardiovascular disease – and by extension, cancer – in inmates. The third paper explores predictors of intent to screen (or not) for prostate cancer in incarcerated African-American males, as well as those factors that influence informed decision-making in this population.

These papers provide an overview of factors that influence incarcerated African-American men’s health decisions (health literacy, having a relative with previous diagnosis). These findings can be used to guide future research that addresses African-American male decision-making about personal health outcomes.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

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Nursing Commons