Objectives To report updated results on long-term nightshift work and breast cancer risk in Hong Kong women.
Method This ongoing case-control study involves three hospitals in Hong Kong. By 31/03/2013, we’ve consecutively recruited 443 newly diagnosed breast cancer cases and 335 age-matched controls from the hospital that the cases came from, with a response rate of 90%. We expect to collect 1000 cases and 1000 controls by 31/12/2013. We obtained each participant’s lifetime occupational history and shift work, exposure to light-at-night and other important risk factors including family cancer history. We performed unconditional logistic regression analyses to calculate odds ratio (OR) after adjusting for potential confounders.
Results The age at diagnosis (interview) between cases and controls is comparable (55.1 ± 11.9 vs. 54.2 ± 14.6 years). More cases than controls were non-parity and non-breast feeding, but gave first birth slightly late. A significantly elevated (adjusted OR=1.90, 95% CI: 1.24–2.89) breast cancer risk was observed in never employed women. Among those ever employed, 19.8% of breast cancers had ever worked at nightshift at least once per month for ≥1 year and it was 21.7% for the controls. Further analyses revealed that nightshift work for ≥15 years resulted in an adjusted OR of 1.55 (95% CI: 0.76–3.14) but power is limited. There is no excess breast cancer risk for women with nightshift work for <15 years.
Conclusions This ongoing study provides supportive evidence on a positive association between long-term nightshift work and breast cancer risk. [Research Grants Council (Project no.: 474811) and Direct Grant (Project no.: 2041788), firstname.lastname@example.org].
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