, Volume 44, Issue 7, pp 1303-1311

Alcohol and Smoking as Risk Factors in Chronic Pancreatitis and Pancreatic Cancer

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The aim of this study was to compare alcohol andsmoking as risk factors in the development of chronicpancreatitis and pancreatic cancer. We considered onlymale subjects: (1) 630 patients with chronic pancreatitis who developed 12 pancreatic and 47extrapancreatic cancers; (2) 69 patients withhistologically well documented pancreatic cancer and noclinical history of chronic pancreatitis; and (3) 700 random controls taken from the Verona pollinglist and submitted to a complete medical check-up.Chronic pancreatitis subjects drink more than controlsubjects and more than subjects with pancreatic cancer without chronic pancreatitis (P < 0.001).The percentage of smokers in the group with chronicpancreatitis is significantly higher than that in thecontrol group [odds ratio (OR) 17.3; 95% CI 12.6-23.8; P < 0.001] and in the group with pancreaticcarcinomas but with no history of chronic pancreatitis(OR 5.3; 95% CI 3.0-9.4; P < 0.001). In conclusion,our study shows that: (1) the risk of chronic pancreatitis correlates both with alcoholintake and with cigarette smoking with a trendindicating that the risk increases with increasedalcohol intake and cigarette consumption; (2) alcoholand smoking are statistically independent risk factors forchronic pancreatitis; and (3) the risk of pancreaticcancer correlates positively with cigarette smoking butnot with drinking.