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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The most common cancer diagnosed among U.S. Latinas is breast cancer, and it's their leading cause of cancer-related death, research published in the journal Cancer Control found.

Why it matters: "While they are less likely to get breast cancer than other ethnic groups, Hispanic women who are diagnosed are 20% more likely than white women to die from the disease," the Baltimore Sun writes.

The big picture: Despite evidence that Latinas have the second-highest prevalence of the breast cancer genes, BRCA1 and BRCA2, their awareness of hereditary cancer risks and genetic testing is low, Susan M. Domchek, executive director of the Basser Center for BRCA at Penn Medicine’s Abramson Cancer Center, writes, limiting their options for early treatment.

What's happening: The Latino community is more likely to have difficulties accessing health care and insurance, making it harder to access medical counseling, referrals and testing services.

  • A 2017 study found that cultural beliefs can influence whether Latinas decide to prolong delays when seeking "preventive services or timely follow-up for breast symptoms regardless of access."
    • Almost 50% of the women who participated in the study said they believed "Faith in God can protect you from breast cancer."
  • The lower incidence of breast cancer among Latinas can also lead to the misconception that they should not worry about the disease, according to the Dr. Susan Love Foundation for breast cancer research.
  • For those who only speak Spanish, there are fewer resources than in English. The Oncology Nursing Society recommends diversifying the workforce to increase the number of Spanish-speaking counselors.

By the numbers: A National Cancer Society survey conducted between 2018 and 2020 found that 61% of Hispanic women over the age of 40 reported getting a mammogram compared to 65% of white women in the same age group.

  • Research conducted in Texas found that 21.3% of Hispanic patients younger than 50 developed advanced breast cancer, compared to 13.5% for non-Hispanic patients.

Worth noting: The overall breast cancer mortality rate for Hispanic women is 13.8 per 100,000, fewer than Black (27.5 per 100,000) or white women (19.4 per 100,000), according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.

But, but, but: Breast cancer affects the Latino community differently depending on ethnicity. Puerto Ricans and Mexicans are more likely to die from the disease than other Hispanic women, USA Today reports.

  • The mortality rate for Puerto Rican women with breast cancer in the U.S. is 19.04 per 100,000 women. For Mexicans, it is 18.78 per 100,000.
  • In comparison, the rate for Central and South American women is 10.15 per 100,000.

The bottom line: "Unless we can gain momentum with more discussion and education about breast cancer and more research into specific causes and prevention of breast cancer in Hispanics, the mortality rate could soon surpass that of non-Hispanic whites," said Susan Love, founder of the Dr. Susan Love Foundation for breast cancer research.

Go deeper

Updated 59 mins ago - Sports

In photos: Tokyo Olympics day 6 highlights

An underwater view of swimmers including Team USA's Caeleb Dressel (R) in the final of the Olympic Tokyo Games men's 100m freestyle on July 29. Photo: François-Xavier Marit/AFP via Getty Images

There's been plenty of Olympics drama on day six of the Tokyo Games Thursday — notably China's women's swimming team beating the U.S. and Australia in the record-setting 4x200-meter freestyle relay.

The big picture: Katie Ledecky helped the U.S. win silver, which also beat the previous world record smashed by China's team. Team USA grabbed two more swimming gold medals, when Caeleb Dressel won the men's 100m freestyle and Bobby Finke triumphed in the first men's Olympic 800m freestyle.

Updated 2 hours ago - Sports

Olympics dashboard

Team USA's Simone Biles during the women's team final on day four of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Ariake Gymnastics Centre on Tuesday in Japan. Photo: Fred Lee/Getty Images

🤸🏾‍♀️: Simone Biles reacts to "love and support" after withdrawing from all-around gymnastics and team finals, citing her mental health

🏊‍♂️: Caeleb Dressel wins gold in men's 100m freestyle —Bobby Finke wins gold in first men's Olympic 800m freestyle

📷: In photos: Tokyo Olympics day 6 highlights

🗓: The Olympic events to watch today

🎾: "This one sucks more than the others," Naomi Osaka says on upset loss

🏃‍: Female Olympians push back against double standard in uniforms

Go deeper: Full Axios coverage - Medal tracker

Updated 4 hours ago - Sports

China wins Olympic gold in women's 4x200m freestyle relay, sets world record

Junxuan Yang, Muhan Tang, Yufei Zhang and Bingjie Li of Team China react after winning the gold medal in the women's 4 x 200m freestyle relay final. Photo: Al Bello/Getty Images

China grabbed Olympic gold in the women's 4x200m freestyle relay, in a surprise record win in Tokyo Thursday.

The big picture: Katie Ledecky made up time as Team USA's final swimmer to help the U.S. take silver. Australia, which was the heavy favorite, won the bronze. All three teams finished ahead of the previous world record pace.