According to a study presented at the international association for the study of lung cancer 2023 world conference on lung cancer, key reproductive factors are associated with high risk of lung cancer in women. These include factors like early menopause, early age at first birth, shortened reproductive span etc.
The researchers at Xianga Hospital, China, have conducted a prospective cohort study involving 273190 participants. The purpose was to find the link between individual reproductive factors and risk of developing lung cancer. They worked to identify potential risk factors and their impact on specific subgroups including age, BMI, smoking status and more. In the study, they found that several reproductive factors showed a significant association with higher risk of lung cancer among women. These included early menarche (age is less than 11 years), early menopause (age is less than 46 years or between 47 to 49), reproductive span between age less than or equal to 32 years or age of 33 to 35 years and early age at first birth i.e. Age of less than 20 or age of 21 to 25 years.
In this study, median follow-up period was 12 years and estimated 1182 lung cancer cases were diagnosed in women. The researchers displayed a strong association with elevated lung cancer risk and in particular Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer. By understanding such associations, healthcare professionals can develop targeted preventive strategies to combat lung cancer effectively. This will help to develop prevention strategies to reduce the burden of lung cancer.
The lead researcher, Dr. Y. Zhang from Xiangya hospital, central south university said, “these findings are of paramount importance in our understanding of the potential risk factors for lung cancer among women.” “early menarche, early menopause, and a shortened reproductive life span are associated with higher risks of incident lung cancer, especially NSCLC, in subpopulations with specific genetic risk and lifestyle choices”, he added.
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