Cancer Causes & Control

, Volume 20, Issue 8, pp 1441–1449

Timing of births and endometrial cancer risk in Swedish women

  • Ruth M. Pfeiffer
  • Aya Mitani
  • Ola Landgren
  • Anders Ekbom
  • Sigurdur Y. Kristinsson
  • Magnus Björkholm
  • Robert J. Biggar
  • Louise A. Brinton
Original paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10552-009-9370-7

Cite this article as:
Pfeiffer, R.M., Mitani, A., Landgren, O. et al. Cancer Causes Control (2009) 20: 1441. doi:10.1007/s10552-009-9370-7

Abstract

While a protective long-term effect of parity on endometrial cancer risk is well established, the impact of timing of births is not fully understood. We examined the relationship between endometrial cancer risk and reproductive characteristics in a population-based cohort of 2,674,465 Swedish women, 20–72 years of age. During follow-up from 1973 to 2004, 7,386 endometrial cancers were observed. Compared to uniparous women, nulliparous women had a significantly elevated endometrial cancer risk (hazard ratio [HR] = 1.32, 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.22–1.42). Endometrial cancer risk decreased with increasing parity; compared to uniparous women, women with ≥4 births had a HR = 0.66 (95% CI, 0.59–0.74); p-trend < 0.001. Among multiparous women, we observed no relationship of risk with age at first birth after adjustment for other reproductive factors. While we initially observed a decreased risk with later ages at last birth, this appeared to reflect a stronger relationship with time since last birth, with women with shorter times being at lowest risk. In models for multiparous women that included number of births, age at first and last birth, and time since last birth, age at last birth was not associated with endometrial cancer risk, while shorter time since last birth and increased parity were associated with statistically significantly reduced endometrial cancer risks. The HR was 3.95 (95% CI; 2.17–7.20; p-trend = <0.0001) for women with ≥25 years since a last birth compared to women having given birth within 4 years. Our findings support that clearance of initiated cells during delivery may be important in endometrial carcinogenesis.

Keywords

Endometrial carcinoma Parity Registry Reproductive factors 

Copyright information

© US Government  2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ruth M. Pfeiffer
    • 1
  • Aya Mitani
    • 2
  • Ola Landgren
    • 3
  • Anders Ekbom
    • 4
  • Sigurdur Y. Kristinsson
    • 4
  • Magnus Björkholm
    • 4
  • Robert J. Biggar
    • 5
  • Louise A. Brinton
    • 6
  1. 1.Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, National Cancer InstituteNational Institutes of HealthBethesdaUSA
  2. 2.Department of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain MedicineBrigham and Women’s HospitalBostonUSA
  3. 3.Medical Oncology Branch, Center for Cancer Research and Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, National Cancer InstituteNational Institutes of HealthBethesdaUSA
  4. 4.Department of Medicine, Division of HematologyKarolinska University Hospital and InstituteStockholmSweden
  5. 5.Department of Epidemiology ResearchStatens Serum InstituteCopenhagenDenmark
  6. 6.Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, National Cancer InstituteNational Institutes of HealthBethesdaUSA

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