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Tobacco and alcohol consumption and the risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma

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Publication details

JournalCancer causes and control
DatePublished - Oct 2004
Issue number8
Number of pages9
Pages (from-to)771-780
Original languageEnglish


OBJECTIVE: The aim was to test whether non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) is associated with smoking or alcohol. METHODS: A case-control study recruited NHL cases aged 18-64 in parts of England between 1998 and 2001. One control was matched to each case on sex, date of birth and area of residence. Self-reported histories of tobacco and alcohol consumption were collected during face-to-face interviews. RESULTS: Among 700 cases and 915 controls, no association of smoking with the risk of NHL was observed [odds ratio (OR)= 1.04, 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.85-1.28]. Risks were not raised with age started smoking, number of years smoked, and number of years stopped smoking. Compared with persons who drank alcohol once or twice a week, neither abstainers (OR = 1.03, 95% CI: 0.64-1.67), nor consumers of alcohol one to five times a year (OR = 1.35, 95% CI: 0.95-1.93), one to two times a month (OR = 1.20, 95% CI: 0.87-1.65), three to four times a week (OR = 0.82, 95% CI: 0.62-1.10), or most days (OR = 0.94, 95% CI: 0.70-1.25) increased their risk of developing NHL. Average daily volume or high occasional alcohol consumption were not associated with NHL. CONCLUSIONS: NHL was not associated with smoking or alcohol, but collaborative studies could further investigate the risks of rarer WHO subtypes following these exposures.

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