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Br J Cancer. 2009 Aug 4;101(3):537-40. doi: 10.1038/sj.bjc.6605149. Epub 2009 Jun 23.

A population-based cohort study on sun habits and endometrial cancer.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Institute of Clinical Sciences Lund, Lund University Hospital, 221 85 Lund, Sweden.



No large cohort study has examined the risk of endometrial cancer in relation to sun exposure.


A population-based cohort study of 29,508 women who answered a questionnaire in 1990-92, of whom 24,098 responded to a follow-up enquiry in 2000-02. They were followed for an average of 15.5 years.


Among the 17,822 postmenopausal women included, 166 cases of endometrial cancer were diagnosed. We used a multivariate Cox regression analysis adjusting for age and other selected demographic variables to determine the risk of endometrial cancer. Women using sun beds >3 times per year reduced their hazard risk (HR) by 40% (0.6, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.4-0.9) or by 50% when adjusting for body mass index or physical activity (HR 0.5, 95% CI 0.3-0.9), and those women who were sunbathing during summer reduced their risk by 20% (HR 0.8 95% CI 0.5-1.5) compared with women who did not expose themselves to the sun or to artificial sun (i.e., sun beds).


Exposure to artificial sun by the use of sun beds >3 times per year was associated with a 40% reduction in the risk of endometrial cancer, probably by improving the vitamin D levels during winter.

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