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Pelvic inflammatory disease and risk of epithelial ovarian cancer: a national population-based case-control study in Sweden
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Obstetrics and Gynecology.ORCID iD: 0009-0005-1288-4645
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Epidemiology and Global Health.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Biosciences, Pathology.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6808-4405
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2023 (English)In: American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, ISSN 0002-9378, E-ISSN 1097-6868, Vol. 230, no 1, p. 75.e1-75.e15Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: Epithelial ovarian cancer is an insidious disease, and women are often diagnosed when the disease is beyond curative treatment. Accordingly, identifying modifiable risk factors is of paramount importance. Inflammation predisposes an individual to cancer in various organs, but whether pelvic inflammatory disease is associated with an increased risk of epithelial ovarian cancer has not been fully determined.

Objective: This study aimed to investigate a possible association between clinically verified pelvic inflammatory disease and the risk of epithelial ovarian cancer.

Study Design: In this national population-based case-control study, all women in Sweden diagnosed with epithelial ovarian cancer between 1999 and 2020 and 10 controls for each were identified, matched for age and residential district. Using several Swedish nationwide registers, data on previous pelvic inflammatory disease and potential confounding factors (age, parity, educational level, and previous gynecologic surgery) were retrieved. Adjusted odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals were estimated using conditional logistic regression. Histotype-specific analyses were performed for the subgroup of women diagnosed with epithelial ovarian cancer between 2015 and 2020. Moreover, hormonal contraceptives and menopausal hormone therapy were adjusted in addition to the aforementioned confounders.

Results: This study included 15,072 women with epithelial ovarian cancer and 141,322 controls. Most women (9102 [60.4%]) had serous carcinoma. In a subgroup of cases diagnosed between 2015 and 2020, high-grade serous carcinoma (2319 [60.0%]) was identified. A total of 168 cases (1.1%) and 1270 controls (0.9%) were diagnosed with pelvic inflammatory disease. Previous pelvic inflammatory disease was associated with an increased risk of epithelial ovarian cancer (adjusted odds ratio, 1.39; 95% confidence interval, 1.17–1.66) and serous carcinoma (adjusted odds ratio, 1.46; 95% confidence interval, 1.18–1.80) for the entire study population. For the subgroup of women diagnosed in 2015–2020, pelvic inflammatory disease was associated with high-grade serous carcinoma (adjusted odds ratio, 1.43; 95% confidence interval, 1.01–2.04). The odds ratios of the other histotypes were as follows: endometrioid (adjusted odds ratio, 0.13; 95% confidence interval, 0.02–1.06), mucinous (adjusted odds ratio, 1.55; 95% confidence interval, 0.56–4.29), and clear cell carcinoma (adjusted odds ratio, 2.30; 95% confidence interval, 0.90–5.86). A dose-response relationship was observed between the number of pelvic inflammatory disease episodes and the risk of epithelial ovarian cancer (Ptrend<.001).

Conclusion: A history of pelvic inflammatory disease is associated with an increased risk of epithelial ovarian cancer and a dose-response relationship is evident. Histotype-specific analyses show an association with increased risk of serous epithelial ovarian cancer and high-grade serous carcinoma and potentially also with clear cell carcinoma, but there is no significant association with other histotypes. Infection and inflammation of the upper reproductive tract might have serious long-term consequences, including epithelial ovarian cancer.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2023. Vol. 230, no 1, p. 75.e1-75.e15
Keywords [en]
epithelial ovarian cancer, high-grade serous carcinoma, ovarian cancer, pelvic inflammatory disease, population-based case-control study
National Category
Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine Cancer and Oncology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-216205DOI: 10.1016/j.ajog.2023.09.094PubMedID: 37778677Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85175294490OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-216205DiVA, id: diva2:1810039
Available from: 2023-11-06 Created: 2023-11-06 Last updated: 2024-01-05Bibliographically approved

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Jonsson, SarahJonsson, HåkanLundin, EvaHäggström, ChristelIdahl, Annika

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