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J Neurosurg. 2014 Apr;120(4):820-6. doi: 10.3171/2013.12.JNS131170. Epub 2014 Jan 31.

Endogenous and exogenous hormone exposure and the risk of meningioma in men.

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Department of Community and Family Medicine, Cancer Prevention, Detection and Control Research Program;



Meningioma is a disease with considerable morbidity and is more commonly diagnosed in females than in males. Hormonally related risk factors have long been postulated to be associated with meningioma risk, but no examination of these factors has been undertaken in males.


Subjects were male patients with intracranial meningioma (n = 456), ranging in age from 20 to 79 years, who were diagnosed among residents of the states of Connecticut, Massachusetts, and North Carolina, the San Francisco Bay Area, and 8 counties in Texas and matched controls (n = 452). Multivariate logistic regression was used to calculate odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) for the association between hormonal factors and meningioma risk in men.


Use of soy and tofu products was inversely associated with meningioma risk (OR 0.50 [95% CI 0.37-0.68]). Increased body mass index (BMI) appears to be associated with an approximately 2-fold increased risk of developing meningioma in men. No other single hormone-related exposure was found to be associated with meningioma risk, although the prevalence of exposure to factors such as orchiectomy and vasectomy was very low.


Estrogen-like exogenous exposures, such as soy and tofu, may be associated with reduced risk of meningioma in men. Endogenous estrogen-associated factors such as high BMI may increase risk. Examination of other exposures related to these factors may lead to better understanding of mechanisms and potentially to intervention.

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