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Int J Cancer. 2014 Sep 15;135(6):1480-6. doi: 10.1002/ijc.28791. Epub 2014 Mar 3.

Lifetime risk of distinct upper aerodigestive tract cancers and consumption of alcohol, betel and cigarette.

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Genomics Research Center, Academia Sinica, Taipei, Taiwan.


The cancer of upper aerodigestive tract (UADT) is a common cancers in the world. However, its lifetime risk by consumption of alcohol, betel and cigarettes remain to be elucidated. This study aimed to estimate lifetime risk of distinct UADT cancers and assess their associations with alcohol, betel and cigarette consumption. Three cohorts of 25,611 men were enrolled in 1982-1992 in Taiwan. The history of alcohol, betel and cigarette consumption was enquired through questionnaire interview. Newly developed UADT cancers were ascertained through computerized linkage with national cancer registry profile. Lifetime (30-80 years old) risk and multivariate-adjusted hazard ratio (HRadj) of distinct UADT cancers by alcohol, betel and cigarette consumption were estimated. A total of 269 pathologically confirmed cases of UADT cancers were newly-diagnosed during 472,096 person-years of follow-up. The lifetime risk of UADT cancer was 9.42 and 1.65% for betel chewers and nonchewers, 3.22 and 1.21% for cigarette smokers and nonsmokers and 4.77 and 1.85% for alcohol drinkers and nondrinkers. The HRadj (95% confidence interval) of developing UADT cancer was 3.36 (2.51-4.49), 2.02 (1.43-2.84), 1.90 (1.46-2.49), respectively, for the consumption of betel, cigarette and alcohol. Alcohol, betel and cigarette had different effect on cancers at various anatomical sites of UADT. The cancer risk from the mouth, pharynx, esophagus to larynx increased for alcohol and cigarette consumption, but decreased for betel consumption. Alcohol, betel and cigarette consumption are independent risk predictors for distinct UADT cancers.


UADT cancers; alcohol drinking; betel quid chewing; cigarette smoking; cumulative lifetime incidence

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