KoMigra - Diagnosis of bowel cancer among immigrants and non-immigrants in Germany

 Background and aims

Although immigrants form a major group in society, very little research has been performed into their health care. Studies that have been conducted to date show that persons with a migration background undergo screening examinations less often than the general population. In order to improve the quality of health care, more needs to be known about specific risks and possible entry barriers to heath care.

On the basis of the colorectal carcinoma, this study by the Goethe University Frankfurt/Main aims to examine whether people with and without a migration background are generally diagnosed with the cancer at a different stage of the disease. The colorectal carcinoma is particular suitable for study because it occurs frequently in the general population and there is a clear correlation between the stage of the disease when it is diagnosed and the prognosis for the patient. An additional objective of the study is to identify predictors for an unfavorable stage of the disease at the time of diagnosis. Knowledge of possible entry barriers to the health care system may be considered in the development of health care concepts that particularly take into account the situation of people with a migration background.


In the first part of the study, the distribution of different stages of the disease at the time of diagnosis will be examined for people with and without a migration background. At participating Centers for Intestinal Diseases and certified Gastroenterologists in private practice in the regions of Frankfurt/Main, Offenbach and Hanau, 1200 patients and their doctors will be surveyed over a period of 16 months. In addition to information about the cancer itself, questionnaires translated into several languages will be used to find out about the patient's migration background, as well as further information about socioeconomic status and access to the health care system.

 Funding and duration

The KoMigra project will be sponsored by German Cancer Aid (Deutsche Krebshilfe).

Duration: 01.05.2013 - 30.04.2015