Evidence From Humans
 
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Self-reported exposure to pesticides in residential settings and risk of breast cancer: a case-control study
Farooq, U., Joshi, M., Nookala, V., Cheriyath, P., Fischman, D., Graber, N. J., Stellman, S. D., Muscat, J. Environ Health. 2010. 9:1, 30.
Topic area
Environmental pollutant - Pesticides
Study design
Hospital based case-control
Study Participants
Menopausal Status
The menopausal status of women included in this study is listed here.
No analyses based on menopausal status
Number of Controls
Controls: 758
Participant selection: Inclusion and exclusion criteria
Criteria used to select participants in the study.
Cases with invasive or in situ breast cancer recruited from two hospitals in New York City in 1994-1996. Controls were female hospital-based patients with benign breast disease or were undergoing non-breast related surgery.
Comment about participation selection
In order to reduce the possible bias of interviewer, patient, and physician, questionnaires were administered prior to completion of pathology results. Consequently, cases and controls were not frequency-matched for any characteristics and these groups differ, e.g. in age and age at menopause.
Exposure Investigated
Exposures investigated
Self-reported home pesticide use in 7 pest categories (e.g. ants and cockroaches, bees, weeds, flies) was obtained by in-person interviews conducted before diagnosis was confirmed.
How exposure was measured
Questionnaire, in person
Exposure assessment comment
A strength of this method is that self-report allows for aggregation of exposures over many years prior to diagnosis and across many types of products, including those with short half-life. However, it does not assess exposures in possible critical periods of development. Details about specific products or chemicals used in pesticide application were not collected.
Breast cancer outcome investigated
Primary incident breast cancer
DCIS/LCIS
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.
Age at diagnosis, race, religion, level of education, family history, BMI, age at menopause, age at menarche
Genetic characterization included
If the study analyzed relationships between environmental factors and inherited genetic variations, this field will be marked “Yes.” “No”, if not.
No
Strength of associations reported
Participants who applied pesticides used for:
Ants, carpenter ants, and cockroaches vs. never exposed: OR 1.25 (95% CI 0.79-1.98)
Bees or wasps vs. never exposed: OR 0.74 (95% CI 0.31-1.72)
Flies or mosquitoes in home or yard vs. never exposed: OR 2.01 (95% CI 0.71-5.66)
Fleas or ticks in home: OR 1.52 (95% CI 0.58-3.93)
Weeds vs. never exposed: OR 1.20 (95% CI 0.40-3.58)
Lawn insects vs. never exposed: OR 2.68 (95% CI 0.72-9.92)
Insects or diseases of outdoor plants vs. never exposed: OR 2.55 (95% CI 0.81-8.00)

When another person from the same household or a professional applied pesticides used for:
Ants, carpenter ants, and cockroaches vs. never exposed: OR 1.06 (95% CI 0.65-1.73)
Bees or wasps vs. never exposed: OR 1.66 (95% CI 0.70-3.94)
Flies or mosquitoes in home or yard vs. never exposed: OR 1.66 (95% CI 0.42-6.62)
Fleas or ticks in home: OR 1.59 (95% CI 0.57-4.44)
Weeds vs. never exposed: OR 1.21 (95% CI 0.75-1.97)
Lawn insects vs. never exposed: OR 1.22 (95% CI 0.73-2.04)
Insects or diseases of outdoor plants vs. never exposed: OR 0.95 (95% CI 0.52-1.74)

Applied via spray:
Ants, carpenter ants, and cockroaches vs. never exposed: OR 1.27 (95% CI 0.83-1.94)
Bees or wasps vs. never exposed: OR 1.11 (95% CI 0.58-2.13)
Flies or mosquitoes in home or yard vs. never exposed: OR 2.16 (95% CI 0.88-5.30)
Fleas or ticks in home: OR 1.85 (95% CI 0.60-5.68)
Weeds vs. never exposed: OR 0.94 (95% CI 0.55-1.61)
Lawn insects vs. never exposed: OR 1.2 (95% CI 0.70-2.03)
Insects or diseases of outdoor plants vs. never exposed: OR 1.03 (95% CI 0.57-1.85)

Applied via fogger/powder/other form:
Ants, carpenter ants, and cockroaches vs. never exposed: OR 0.81 (95% CI 0.44-1.49)
Fleas or ticks in home: OR 1.4 (95% CI 0.57-3.43)
Weeds vs. never exposed: OR 1.76 (95% CI 0.91-3.42)
Lawn insects vs. never exposed: OR 1.99 (OR 95% CI 0.81-4.86)
Insects or diseases of outdoor plants vs. never exposed (8 cases): OR 2.55 (95% CI 0.60-10.88)
Reviewers Comments
Crude odds ratios were not presented for comparison.
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