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Leuk Res. 1996 Sep;20(9):727-31.

A case-control study of myelodysplastic syndromes among Japanese men and women.

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Department of Public Health, Gifu University School of Medicine, Japan.


To determine the risk factors of the myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) we conducted a case-control study in Japan. One hundred and sixteen MDS patients were diagnosed from 1 September to 31 October 1992 and from 1 August to 31 October 1993 in the 32 hospitals enrolled in the idiopathic Disorders of Hematopoietic Organs Research Committee. Age, sex, and hospital-matched controls were selected for each case. Information on cigarette smoking and drinking habits, hair dye use, history of keeping pet animals, and occupational exposures to organic solvents, lead and radiation was obtained from self-administered questionnaires. Conditional logistic regression was applied to this individually matched case-control study and odds ratios (ORs) were computed to estimate association between each exposure variable and risk of MDS. Alcohol drinking was associated with increased risk of MDS (OR = 2.15; 95% confidence interval = 1.12-4.16) and there was a significant trend in risk with increasing amounts of ethanol consumed per week (P < 0.05). We also found elevated ORs for cigarette smokers (OR = 1.80), users of hair dye products (OR = 1.77), and workers exposed to organic solvents (OR = 1.50), although these ratios were not statistically significant. Exposure to pet animals was not associated with risk of MDS. The association observed between alcohol drinking and MDS was still eminent even after adjusted with other variables of cigarette smoking, hair dye use and occupational exposure to organic solvents, and the dose-response relationship was also confirmed.

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