Being Breastfed Associated With Increased Risk of Colorectal Cancer
Douglas K. Rex, MD, MASGE, reviewing Yuan C, et al. Clin Gastrointest Hepatol 2023 Sep 6.
This study utilized data from two cohorts of the Nurses‘ Health Study involving nearly 159,000 women and 3.5 million person-years of follow-up.
The investigators discovered that having been breastfed was associated with a 21% increased risk of colorectal cancer (CRC) in one cohort and 31% in the other. Combined, the increased risk was 23%.
The duration of breastfeeding was confirmed in a subset of mothers of the nurses. Being breastfed for ≤3 months, 4 to 8 months, and ≥9 months had a 14%, 17%, and 36% increased risk, respectively. The increased risk persisted with the advancing age of nurses who had been breastfed as infants.
Among younger nurses who had undergone endoscopy, having been breastfed was associated with a 25% increased risk of young-onset adenomas and a 64% increased risk of advanced adenomas but no increase in serrated polyps.
Note to readers: At the time we reviewed this paper, its publisher noted that it was not in final form and that subsequent changes might be made.
Yuan C, Wang QL, Kim H, et al. Being breastfed in infancy and risk of colorectal cancer and precursor lesions. Clin Gastrointest Hepatol 2023 Sep 6. (Epub ahead of print) (https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cgh.2023.08.023)