06 May 2014 In Cancer

 

 

 

CONTEXT: Multiple studies have linked alcohol consumption to breast cancer risk, but the risk of lower levels of consumption has not been well quantified. In addition, the role of drinking patterns (ie, frequency of drinking and "binge" drinking) and consumption at different times of adult life are not well understood.

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the association of breast cancer with alcohol consumption during adult life, including quantity, frequency, and age at consumption.

DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: Prospective observational study of 105,986 women enrolled in the Nurses' Health Study followed up from 1980 until 2008 with an early adult alcohol assessment and 8 updated alcohol assessments.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Relative risks of developing invasive breast cancer.

RESULTS: During 2.4 million person-years of follow-up, 7690 cases of invasive breast cancer were diagnosed. Increasing alcohol consumption was associated with increased breast cancer risk that was statistically significant at levels as low as 5.0 to 9.9 g per day, equivalent to 3 to 6 drinks per week (relative risk, 1.15; 95% CI, 1.06-1.24; 333 cases/100,000 person-years). Binge drinking, but not frequency of drinking, was associated with breast cancer risk after controlling for cumulative alcohol intake. Alcohol intake both earlier and later in adult life was independently associated with risk.

CONCLUSIONS: Low levels of alcohol consumption were associated with a small increase in breast cancer risk, with the most consistent measure being cumulative alcohol intake throughout adult life. Alcohol intake both earlier and later in adult life was independently associated with risk.

 

 

 

06 May 2014 In Cancer

 

 

 

INTRODUCTION: Alcohol intake has been consistently associated with breast cancer risk, but the importance of timing of intake and the impact of beverage type are unclear.

METHODS: We evaluated whether early, lifetime or recent alcohol intake was associated with breast cancer risk, and whether risk varied by type of alcoholic drinks in 1,728 newly diagnosed population-based breast cancer patients and 435 control subjects aged 20-49 years. We used multivariable logistic regression models to estimate odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) as measures of the relative risk of breast cancer associated with intake of alcoholic drinks.

RESULTS: Intake of alcoholic drinks during the recent five year period before the breast cancer diagnosis was associated with increased breast cancer risk (P (trend) = 0.04). Intake of two or more alcoholic drinks per day during this five year period was associated with an 82% increase in breast cancer risk relative to never drinkers (OR = 1.82, 95% CI = 1.01-3.28). No risk increase was observed for alcohol intake at ages 15-20 years or for lifetime alcohol intake. Risk did not vary by type of alcohol consumed.

CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that recent alcohol consumption may be associated with increased breast cancer risk in young women.

 

 

 

06 May 2014 In Cancer

 

 

 

BACKGROUND: With the exception of breast cancer, little is known about the effect of moderate intakes of alcohol, or of particular types of alcohol, on cancer risk in women.

METHODS: A total of 1,280,296 middle-aged women in the United Kingdom enrolled in the Million Women Study were routinely followed for incident cancer. Cox regression models were used to calculate adjusted relative risks and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for 21 site-specific cancers according to amount and type of alcoholic beverage consumed. All statistical tests were two-sided.

RESULTS: A quarter of the cohort reported drinking no alcohol; 98% of drinkers consumed fewer than 21 drinks per week, with drinkers consuming an average of 10 g alcohol (1 drink) per day. During an average 7.2 years of follow-up per woman 68,775 invasive cancers occurred. Increasing alcohol consumption was associated with increased risks of cancers of the oral cavity and pharynx (increase per 10 g/d = 29%, 95% CI = 14% to 45%, Ptrend < .001), esophagus (22%, 95% CI = 8% to 38%, Ptrend = .002), larynx (44%, 95% CI = 10% to 88%, Ptrend = .008), rectum (10%, 95% CI = 2% to 18%, Ptrend = .02), liver (24%, 95% CI = 2% to 51%, Ptrend = .03), breast (12%, 95% CI = 9% to 14%, Ptrend < .001), and total cancer (6%, 95% CI = 4% to 7%, Ptrend < .001). The trends were similar in women who drank wine exclusively and other consumers of alcohol. For cancers of the upper aerodigestive tract, the alcohol-associated risk was confined to current smokers, with little or no effect of alcohol among never and past smokers (P(heterogeneity) < .001). Increasing levels of alcohol consumption were associated with a decreased risk of thyroid cancer (Ptrend = .005), non-Hodgkin lymphoma (Ptrend = .001), and renal cell carcinoma (Ptrend = .03).

CONCLUSIONS: Low to moderate alcohol consumption in women increases the risk of certain cancers. For every additional drink regularly consumed per day, the increase in incidence up to age 75 years per 1000 for women in developed countries is estimated to be about 11 for breast cancer, 1 for cancers of the oral cavity and pharynx, 1 for cancer of the rectum, and 0.7 each for cancers of the esophagus, larynx and liver, giving a total excess of about 15 cancers per 1000 women up to age 75.

 

 

 

14 November 2012 In Drinking & Driving

AIMS: The main objective of this article was to compare alcohol and tobacco consumption in the US and the Basque Country (the North of Spain) with particular attention to the association between alcohol and tobacco use. The consistency of findings was considered by analyzing data from two different years. These comparisons may provide a rational basis for exploring the associations between alcohol and cigarette use that are influenced by changes in use prevalences.

METHODS: Two epidemiological samples from the US, obtained in 1992 and 1996, and two from the Basque Country, obtained in the same years, were used. Sampling methodologies were similar. Questionnaires were self-administrated with the help of interviewers, and were used to define ever smokers, ex-smokers, current smokers, heavy smokers, ever drinkers, ex-drinkers, current drinkers and weekly drinkers. The associations between smoking and alcohol drinking were explored through logistic regressions.

RESULTS: The associations between current smoking and current drinking in the general population, and between ever smoking and weekly drinking among current drinkers appear very stable. In 1992 and 1996, US subjects who decided to try alcohol tended to try smoking and vice versa. In US Caucasians (particularly in 1996), heavy smoking was strongly associated with ever drinking among current smokers. In the Basque Country in 1992, there was a significant association between smoking cessation and drinking cessation among ever drinkers who also were ever smokers.

CONCLUSIONS: Our analyses suggest that some associations between alcohol drinking and smoking behaviours are likely to be detected in Western countries where alcohol and nicotine are legal and easily available. On the other hand, other associations may be detected only in certain social contexts. These social contexts make the associations in subpopulations who are vulnerable to addiction, influence the results in the general population. In social contexts that exert considerable social pressure to quit smoking, such as in US Caucasians (particularly in 1996), heavy smoking was strongly associated with ever drinking among current smokers. When a social environment strongly discourages smoking and alcohol initiation (as in the US in 1992 and 1996), subjects who decide to try alcohol tend to try smoking and vice versa. The lack of social stigmatization of smoking and drinking in the Basque Country in 1992 may help to explain the significant association between smoking cessation and drinking cessation among ever drinkers who also were ever smokers.

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