Effects of obesity and hormone therapy on surgically-confirmed fibroids in postmenopausal womenReport as inadecuate

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European Journal of Epidemiology

, Volume 30, Issue 6, pp 493–499

First Online: 18 March 2015Received: 26 September 2014Accepted: 04 March 2015DOI: 10.1007-s10654-015-0016-7

Cite this article as: Sommer, E.M., Balkwill, A., Reeves, G. et al. Eur J Epidemiol 2015 30: 493. doi:10.1007-s10654-015-0016-7


To examine the association between body mass index BMI, use of menopausal hormone therapy HT, and incidence of uterine fibroids in postmenopausal women, 610,604 postmenopausal women without prior hysterectomy or diagnosis of fibroids were followed as part of a large United Kingdom prospective cohort study. We used Cox regression models to calculate adjusted relative risks RRs of surgically-confirmed fibroids defined as a hospital admission with uterine fibroids as a primary diagnosis with a related surgical procedure, in relation to BMI and use of HT. During an average of 11.4 years of follow-up, 3561 women were admitted to hospital with surgically-confirmed fibroids. Five-year incidence rates decreased with age, from 0.50 % 1 in 200 women at age 50–54, to 0.11 % 1 in 1000 women at age 75–79. The 5-year rate in postmenopausal women aged 50–54 was about a quarter that seen in premenopausal women of the same age 1 in 200 vs. 1 in 50. Compared with normal weight women, obese women had a RR of surgically-detected fibroids of 1.46 95 % CI 1.33–1.59; p < 0.0001. HT use was associated with a RR of 2.33 95 % CI 2.18–2.49; p < 0.0001 in ever versus never users. When we analysed HT use and BMI together, obese vs. normal weight never users had a RR of 2.00 95 % CI 1.77–2.26: the highest risks were seen in women who were obese and had ever used HT, RR = 3.30 95 % CI 2.88–3.79. Uterine fibroids continue to occur in postmenopausal women; obesity and hormone therapy use are important modifiable risk factors.

KeywordsUterine leiomyoma Fibroids Postmenopausal BMI HRT Million Women Study On behalf of The Million Women Study Collaborators.

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Author: Eva M. Sommer - Angela Balkwill - Gillian Reeves - Jane Green - Dame Valerie Beral - Kate Coffey

Source: https://link.springer.com/

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