Environment and Breast Cancer: Science Review

Evidence From Humans
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Birth weight as a predictor of breast cancer: a case-control study in Norway
Vatten, L. J., Maehle, B. O., Lund Nilsen, T. I., Tretli, S., Hsieh, C. C., Trichopoulos, D., Stuver, S. O. Br J Cancer. 2002. 86:1, 89-91.
Topic area
Early life exposures
Study design
Population based case-control
Study Participants
Menopausal Status
The menopausal status of women included in this study is listed here.
Number of Controls
Controls: 1150
Participant selection: Inclusion and exclusion criteria
Criteria used to select participants in the study.
In: All female residents of Trondheim and Bergen, Norway, who were born at the two main hospitals in those cities between 1910 and 1970. Cases were identified from the Norwegian Cancer Registry and were residents in these cities at the time of diagnosis. Controls were born consecutively to the case in the same city and were residents of Trondheim or Bergen at the time of case's diagnosis. Ex: cases or controls with no available birth record
Exposure Investigated
Exposures investigated
Birthweight, birth length
How exposure was measured
Other: Birth records
Exposure assessment comment
Quartiles with narrow limits for length (difficult measure at 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, menopausal status, 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
Conditional logistic regression conditioned on city of residence at the time of diagnosis, age and birth date and additionally adjusted for age at first birth and parity. Adjusted OR with 95%; Highest versus lowest quartile of the distribution among contr
Strength of associations reported
Birthweight: 1.4 (1.1-1.9); birth length: 1.3 (1.0-1.8)
Results Comments
Positive association between birthweight and birth length and breast cancer risk
Author address
Department of Community Medicine and General Practice, The Norwegian University of Science and Technology, N-7489 Trondheim, Norway. lars.vatten@medisin.ntnu.no