28 September 2023 In Cancer

BACKGROUND: Alcohol consumption has been associated with increased risks of certain site-specific cancers and decreased risks of some other cancers. There is, however, little reliable evidence as to whether the alcohol-associated risks for specific cancers are modified by smoking, body mass index (BMI) and menopausal hormone therapy (MHT) use.

METHODS: In the prospective UK Million Women Study, 1,233,177 postmenopausal women without prior cancer, mean age 56 (SD 5) years, reported their alcohol consumption in median year 1998 (IQR 1998-1999), and were followed by record-linkage for incident cancer. 438,056 women who drank no alcohol or < 1 drink/week were excluded. Cox regression yielded adjusted relative risks (RRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for 21 cancers by alcohol amount; statistical significance of interactions with smoking, BMI and MHT use was assessed after allowing for multiple testing.

RESULTS: In 795,121 participants, mean consumption was 6.7 (SD 6.4) alcoholic drinks/week. During 17 (SD 5) years of follow-up, 140,203 incident cancers were recorded. There was strong evidence for a substantial association between alcohol intake and risk of upper aero-digestive cancers (oesophageal squamous cell carcinoma, oral cavity, pharynx and larynx; RR per 1 drink/day = 1.38 [95% CI 1.31-1.46]). There was also strong evidence for more moderate positive associations with breast, colorectal and pancreatic cancer (RRs per 1 drink/day = 1.12 [1.10-1.14], 1.10 [1.07-1.13], 1.08 [1.02-1.13] respectively), and moderate negative associations with thyroid cancer, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, renal cell carcinoma and multiple myeloma (RRs per 1 drink/day = 0.79 [0.70-0.89], 0.91 [0.86-0.95], 0.88 [0.83-0.94], 0.90 [0.84-0.97] respectively). Significant interactions between alcohol and smoking were seen for upper aero-digestive cancers (RRs per 1 drink/day = 1.66 [1.54-1.79], 1.23 [1.11-1.36], 1.12 [1.01-1.25] in current, past, and never smokers respectively). BMI and MHT did not significantly modify any alcohol-associated risks.

CONCLUSIONS: These findings provide robust evidence that greater alcohol intake, even within relatively moderate ranges, increases the risk of cancers of the aerodigestive tract, breast, colorectal and pancreatic cancer, and probably decreases the risk of thyroid cancer, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, renal cell carcinoma and multiple myeloma. Associations of alcohol intake with cancer risk were not modified by MHT use, adiposity or smoking, except in the case of upper aero-digestive cancers, where the alcohol-associated risk was largely confined to smokers.

28 September 2023 In General Health

BACKGROUND: In this study, we examined the effect of alcohol, as well as the combined effect of seven lifestyle factors, on all-cause mortality in older adults (baseline age 70 years).

METHODS: Data was derived from the population-based Gothenburg H70 Birth Cohort study, including 1124 participants from the 2014-16 examination. Risk consumption was defined as > 98 g alcohol per week, and hazardous drinking was based on the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test-Consumption questionnaire (AUDIT-C). Cox regression models were used to examine the individual effect of alcohol consumption, as well as the combined effect of seven lifestyle risk factors (high alcohol consumption, lifetime smoking, unhealthy Body Mass Index, insufficient physical activity, sedentary behavior, insufficient/prolonged sleep, unhealthy dietary pattern) on all-cause mortality.

RESULTS: During a mean follow-up of 7.7 years, 81 (7.2%) participants died. Neither risk consumption nor hazardous drinking were associated with elevated mortality, but hazardous drinking was associated with an increased risk of mortality in those with insufficient physical activity. Those with at least five lifestyle risk factors had an increased all-cause mortality compared to those fulfilling criteria for a maximum of one lifestyle risk factor. High alcohol consumption showed a relatively minor impact on this risk, while physical activity and unhealthy dietary pattern had an independent effect on mortality.

CONCLUSIONS: In this particular sample, there was no independent effect of alcohol on the risk of 8-year all-cause mortality. However, an interaction effect of physical activity was observed. It may be that high alcohol consumption per se is less important for mortality among older adults. However, a combination of several unhealthy lifestyle behaviors was linked to a substantial increase in the risk of mortality in Swedish older adults. Also, it has to be emphasized that high alcohol consumption may have other adverse health effects apart from mortality among older adults.

28 September 2023 In Cardiovascular System

BACKGROUND: The incidence of stroke in China is increasing, along with a clear trend in the prevalence of risk factors. Alcohol consumption is also a risk factor for stroke. Many cohort studies have explored the relationship between alcohol consumption and stroke risk. However, findings have been inconsistent.

METHODS: We used cluster sampling to select 13 districts and counties (at the same level) in Chongqing, China. Then, we used stratified random sampling to distribute the number of people in each district and county. 23,308 adults aged 30-79 were recruited between October 2018 and February 2019. Follow-up was conducted through a monitoring system and questionnaires until September 2022. Information on alcohol consumption and other covariates was collected using a standardized questionnaire. Participants were asked to report their weekly frequency of drinking over the past year and weekly intake of various alcoholic beverages in general. The frequency of drinking was divided into three categories: 1-2 d/week, 3-5 d/week, and 6-7 d/week. The average daily alcohol consumption is calculated based on the amount of alcohol contained in different alcoholic beverages. It is classified as nondrinker (0 g/day), light (0 to 12 g/day), moderate (13 to 36 g/day), and high (> 36 g/day). Cox proportional hazard regression models were used to estimate the association between alcohol consumption and stroke risk. Results are shown as multivariate-adjusted hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs).

RESULTS: With an average follow-up of 3.80 years, there were 310 new stroke events. The incidence of total stroke was 368.69 per 100,000 person-years. Overall, after adjusting for covariates, moderate alcohol consumption (average daily alcohol consumption 13-36 g/d) was associated with a lower risk of total stroke (HR: 0.48; 95% CI: 0.25-0.92) compared with nondrinkers. The adjusted HR and 95% CI for total stroke and ischemic stroke for those who drank alcohol 6-7 days per week were 0.60(0.37, 0.96) and 0.53(0.30, 0.94), respectively. The risk of total stroke (HR: 0.39; 95% CI: 0.17-0.89) was reduced in a pattern of drinking 6-7 days per week but with a mean alcohol consumption of less than 36 g/d. There was no significant association between alcohol consumption and hemorrhagic stroke.

CONCLUSION: This study suggests moderate alcohol consumption is associated with a lower risk of total stroke. And healthy drinking patterns should be of more significant concern.

18 August 2023 In Pregnant Women

INTRODUCTION: According to a precautionary principle, it is recommended that pregnant women and women trying to conceive abstain from alcohol consumption. In this dose-response meta-analysis, we aimed to examine the association between alcohol consumption and binge drinking and the risk of miscarriage in the first and second trimesters.

MATERIAL AND METHODS: The literature search was conducted in MEDLINE, Embase and the Cochrane Library in May 2022, without any language, geographic or time limitations. Cohort or case-control studies reporting dose-specific effects adjusting for maternal age and using separate risk assessments for first- and second-trimester miscarriages were included. Study quality was assessed using the Newcastle-Ottawa Scale. This study is registered with PROSPERO, registration number CRD42020221070.

RESULTS: A total of 2124 articles were identified. Five articles met the inclusion criteria. Adjusted data from 153 619 women were included in the first-trimester analysis and data from 458 154 women in the second-trimester analysis. In the first and second trimesters, the risk of miscarriage increased by 7% (odds ratio [OR] 1.07, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.96-1.20) and 3% (OR 1.03, 95% CI 0.99-1.08) for each additional drink per week, respectively, but not to a statistically significant degree. One article regarding binge drinking and the risk of miscarriage was found, which revealed no association between the variables in either the first or second trimester (OR 0.84 [95% CI 0.62-1.14] and OR 1.04 [95% CI 0.78-1.38]).

CONCLUSIONS: This meta-analysis revealed no dose-dependent association between miscarriage risk and alcohol consumption, but further focused research is recommended. The research gap regarding miscarriage and binge drinking needs further investigation.

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