Environment and Breast Cancer: Science Review

Evidence From Humans
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Characteristics of pregnancy and birth and malignancy in the offspring (Sweden)
Mogren, I., Damber, L., Tavelin, B., Hogberg, U. Cancer Causes Control. 1999. 10:1, 85-94.
Topic area
Early life exposures
Study design
Retrospective cohort
Funding agency
Other: Swedish Council for Social Science Research
Study Participants
Number of Cases
57 (12 cases with birth weight information available)
Menopausal Status
The menopausal status of women included in this study is listed here.
Number in Cohort
Cohort: 248,701 men and women (152590 with birth weight information available)
Participant selection: Inclusion and exclusion criteria
Criteria used to select participants in the study.
In: Women born at the delivery units in the counties of Vasterbotten and Vasternorrland, for the period of 1955 to 1990
Comment about participation selection
Study for multi-site cancers, young cohort with few breast cancers
Exposure Investigated
Exposures investigated
Birthweight, maternal age, gestational age, diabetes, twinning, preeclampsia
How exposure was measured
Other: Birth records
Exposure assessment comment
Very few cases in extreme categories of birthweight, gestational age and maternal age, very few pre-eclampsia, no diabetes mellitus or multiples birth
Statistical Analysis
Breast cancer outcome investigated
Primary incident breast cancer
Ethnic groups with separate analysis
If this study provided a separate analysis by ethnic or racial group, the groups are listed here.
Confounders considered
Other breast cancer risk factors, such as family history, age at first birth, and hormone replacement therapy use, that were taken into account in the study.
BMI, race, parity, alcohol consumption, family history of breast cancer
Genetic characterization included
If the study analyzed relationships between environmental factors and inherited genetic variations, this field will be marked “Yes.” “No”, if not.
Description of major analysis
Standardized using sex, age and calendar-specific incidence rate for the northern region of Sweden. Standardized incidence ratio with 95%CI, birthweight, gestational age, diabetes, single birth, maternal age and pre-eclampsia: comparison between observed
Strength of associations reported
Birthweight: >=4500g: 7.35 (0.10-40.87); Gestational age: <=36 weeks: 3.56 (0.05-19.83); maternal age: 1.68 (0.64-4.42); pre-eclampsia: 1.40 (0.45-3.28); Single birth: 0.99 (0.75, 1.28); no diabetes: 0.99 (0.75, 1.28)
Maternal age (25-35 years versus <= 24 years): 2.06 (1.03, 4.13)
Results Comments
Overall few associations were detected between birth characteristics and risk of breast cancer. Because of a low number of observed cases in some strata, it is possible that they have failed to detect existing effects.
Author address
Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Umea University, Sweden.