Occupational risk factors for endometrial cancer among textile workers in Shanghai, China

Authors

  • Karen J. Wernli PhD,

    Corresponding author
    1. Program in Epidemiology, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, Washington
    2. Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health and Community Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington
    • Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, 1100 Fairview Ave N, M4-B402, Seattle, WA 98109.
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  • Roberta M. Ray MS,

    1. Program in Epidemiology, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, Washington
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  • Dao Li Gao MD,

    1. Department of Epidemiology, Zhong Shan Hospital Cancer Center, Shanghai, China
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  • E. Dawn Fitzgibbons MPH,

    1. Program in Epidemiology, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, Washington
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  • Janice E. Camp MS,

    1. Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, School of Public Health and Community Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington
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  • George Astrakianakis PhD,

    1. Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, School of Public Health and Community Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington
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  • Noah Seixas PhD,

    1. Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, School of Public Health and Community Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington
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  • Wenjin Li MD,

    1. Program in Epidemiology, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, Washington
    2. Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health and Community Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington
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  • Anneclaire J. De Roos PhD,

    1. Program in Epidemiology, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, Washington
    2. Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health and Community Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington
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  • Ziding Feng PhD,

    1. Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health and Community Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington
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  • David B. Thomas PhD,

    1. Program in Epidemiology, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, Washington
    2. Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health and Community Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington
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  • Harvey Checkoway PhD

    1. Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health and Community Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington
    2. Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, School of Public Health and Community Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington
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Abstract

Objective

A case-cohort study was conducted to investigate associations between occupational exposures and endometrial cancer nested within a large cohort of textile workers in Shanghai, China.

Methods

The study included 176 incident endometrial cancer cases diagnosed from 1989 to 1998 and a randomly-selected age-stratified reference subcohort (n = 3,061). Study subjects' complete work histories were linked to a job-exposure matrix developed specifically for the textile industry to assess occupational exposures. Hazard ratios (HR) and 95% confidence intervals were calculated using Cox proportional hazards modeling adapted for the case-cohort design, adjusting for age at menarche and a composite variable of gravidity and parity.

Results

An increased risk of endometrial cancer was detected among women who had worked for ≥10 years in silk production (HR = 3.8, 95% CI 1.2–11.8) and had exposure to silk dust (HR = 1.7, 95% CI 0.9–3.4). Albeit with few exposed women (two cases and eight subcohort women), there was a 7.4-fold increased risk associated with ≥10 years of silica dust exposure (95% CI 1.4–39.7).

Conclusions

The findings suggest that some textile industry exposures might play a role in endometrial carcinoma and should be further replicated in other occupational settings. Am. J. Ind. Med. 51:673–679, 2008. Published 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

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