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Cancer Causes Control. 2010 Jul;21(7):1105-16. doi: 10.1007/s10552-010-9538-1. Epub 2010 Mar 25.

Case-control study of lifetime total physical activity and endometrial cancer risk.

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Alberta Health Services, 1331-29 St NW, Calgary, AB T2N 4N2, Canada.


A population-based case-control study of physical activity and endometrial cancer risk was conducted in Alberta between 2002 and 2006. Incident, histologically confirmed cases of endometrial cancer (n = 542) were frequency age-matched to controls (n = 1,032). The Lifetime Total Physical Activity Questionnaire was used to measure occupational, household, and recreational activity levels. Multivariable logistic regression analyses were conducted. Total lifetime physical activity reduced endometrial cancer risk (odds ratio [OR] for >129 vs. <82 MET-h/week/year = 0.86, 95% confidence interval [95% CI]: 0.63, 1.18). By type of activity, the risks were significantly decreased for greater recreational activity (OR = 0.64, 95% CI: 0.47, 0.87), but not for household activity (OR = 1.09, 95% CI: 0.75, 1.58) and/or occupational activity (OR = 0.90, 95% CI: 0.67, 1.20) when comparing the highest to lowest quartiles. For activity performed at different biologically defined life periods, some indication of reduced risks with activity done between menarche and full-term pregnancy and after menarche was observed. When examining the activity by intensity of activity (i.e., light <3, moderate 3-6, and vigorous >6 METs), light activity slightly decreased endometrial cancer risk (OR = 0.68, 95% CI: 0.48, 0.97) but no association with moderate or vigorous intensity activity was found. Endometrial cancer risk was increased with sedentary occupational activity by 28% (95 CI%: 0.89, 1.83) for >11.3 h/week/year versus <or=2.4 h/week/year or by 11% for every 5 h/week/year spent in sedentary behavior. This study provides evidence for a decreased risk between lifetime physical activity and endometrial cancer risk and a possible increased risk associated with sedentary behavior.

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