LGBTQ+ at higher risk of cancer – what to do

lgbtq+ cancer

The 2024 Cancer Facts and Figures Report of the American Cancer Society includes a section dedicated to documenting cancer data related to the LGBTQ+ community.

The report says LGBTQ+ people are at higher risk of cancer because of ‘minority stress’.

Minority stress refers to “the conflict that arises between the values of a historically minoritized group and the dominant culture or society.”

The report says minority stress partially explains the elevated prevalence of some cancer risk factors among LGBTQ+ individuals.

“More than 40% of all cancers in the general population are attributable to potentially modifiable risk factors, such as tobacco use, excess body weight, alcohol consumption, and unhealthy diet.”

But in addition to increased risk of cancer, LGBTQ+ individuals are also less inclined to access medical help because of discrimination in their lives.

More than half of LGBTQ+ adults have experienced harassment, including slurs, microaggressions, sexual harassment, and violence.

“1 in 3 have experienced discrimination simply trying to use the bathroom.

“This discrimination is most common among people of color and extends to health care settings.

“One in 6 LGBTQ+ adults, and 1 in 5 transgender adults specifically, avoid health care due to previous discrimination.”

The report says LGBTQ+ individuals “experience disparate outcomes across the cancer continuum, including prevention, screening and early detection, diagnosis, treatment, and palliative care.”

What to do?

1/ Cut back on modifiable risk factors. Give up smoking, lose weight, cut back on drinking and eat healthier foods.

2/ In Australia, you help pay for our public health system. Use it!

Take advantage of the screening procedures available to you and book whatever checks you need. Expect to be treated like any other Australian and complain if you are not.

Finally, support Aussie advocacy groups fighting for LGBTQIA+ equality in Australia. Because discrimination = poorer health outcomes. It’s time we refused to accept that.

More on the LGBTQ+ and cancer:

New study looks into how prostate cancer affects bottoms.

AskDocQ: Are Trans Women On HRT At Increased Risk Of Breast Cancer?

DocQ: Lesbians more susceptible to breast cancer – Check today!

Get ya bum checked and kick anal cancer in the arse!

AskDocQ: Why You Should Give Up Smoking, And How You Can Do It.

For the latest LGBTIQA+ Sister Girl and Brother Boy news, entertainment, community stories in Australia, visit Check out our latest magazines or find us on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

Destiny Rogers

Destiny Rogers embarked on her career in the media industry immediately after high school, initially joining Mirror News, which later evolved into News Ltd. She fondly recalls editing Ian Byford's 'Passing Glances: A History of Gay Cairns' as one of her most fulfilling projects. Additionally, Destiny co-researched and co-wrote 'The Queen's Ball', chronicling the history of the world's longest-running continuous queer event. Her investigative work on the history of Australia's COON Cheese and Edward Coon culminated in the publication 'COON: More Holes than Swiss Cheese', a collaborative effort with Dr. Stephen Hagan. Destiny's journey at QNews began as a feature writer, and she was subsequently elevated to the role of Managing Editor of QNews Magazine in 2018. However, in July 2022, she decided to resign from this role to refocus on research and feature writing. For contact, please reach out at

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1 Comment

  1. Cool Pete
    24 March 2024

    My doctor is Asian, and most of her patients are Asian. My uncle is Italian (he’s an uncle by marriage) and his parents used to see an Italian doctor my mother forced me to see when I was a teenager, and we were like using a Toyota Corolla to tow a 40-foot caravan. My Asian doctor and I are like using a Toyota Landcruiser to tow a 40-foot caravan.
    LGBTIQAP people need to be able to access doctors with whom we feel comfortable. As a gynephilic transwoman, I am fortunate to have both an understanding GP and an endocrinologist who I found on the TransHub website, who is a member of the AusPATH.

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