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Jpn J Clin Oncol. 1989 Sep;19(3):202-7.

Alcohol consumption and cancers of hormone-related organs in females.

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Division of Epidemiology, Aichi Cancer Center Research Institute, Nagoya.


The relations between alcohol consumption and cancers of the breast, corpus uteri and ovary were investigated in a case-control study involving 1,740 cases of breast cancer, 239 cases of cancer of the corpus uteri, 417 cases of ovarian cancer and 8,920 controls with other cancer sites identified from the Aichi Cancer Registry, Japan 1980-1986. The age-adjusted relative risk (RR) of daily alcohol drinkers compared to non-drinkers was significantly increased for breast cancer (RR = 1.36, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.04-1.78), that for cancer of the corpus uteri was lowered insignificantly (RR = 0.44, 95% CI 0.15-1.38) and that for ovarian cancer was significantly lowered (RR = 0.38, 95% CI 0.16-0.90). The increase in the risk of breast cancer associated with daily alcohol drinking was evident in the age range 50 and over, the risk specified by type of alcoholic beverage being highest for beer. Multivariate analyses controlled for age, residence, marital status, occupation, smoking habit and family history of breast cancer did not materially change the RRs of daily alcohol drinkers. Despite the several limitations of the study, the results were consistent with those of previous studies from other countries, suggesting that alcohol consumption may contribute to the risk of breast cancer in Japanese woman, as it dose elsewhere. The present study also suggested alcohol consumption not to be associated with elevated risks of cancer in other hormone-related organs in females, and possibly to be associated with a decreased risk of ovarian cancer.

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