Vitamin or mineral supplement intake and the risk of head and neck cancer

International Journal of Cancer, 04/25/2012

Li Q et al. – The authors did not observe any strong associations between vitamin or mineral supplement intake and the risk of head and neck cancer (HNC).

Methods

  • The authors analyzed individual-level pooled data from 12 case-control studies (7,002 HNC cases and 8,383 controls) participating in the International Head and Neck Cancer Epidemiology consortium.
  • There were a total of 2,028 oral cavity cancer, 2,465 pharyngeal cancer, 874 unspecified oral/pharynx cancer, 1,329 laryngeal cancer and 306 overlapping HNC cases.
  • Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for self reported ever use of any vitamins, multivitamins, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, and calcium, beta-carotene, iron, selenium and zinc supplements were assessed.
  • They further examined frequency, duration and cumulative exposure of each vitamin or mineral when possible and stratified by smoking and drinking status.
  • All ORs were adjusted for age, sex, race/ethnicity, study center, education level, pack-years of smoking, frequency of alcohol drinking and fruit/vegetable intake.

Results

  • A decreased risk of HNC was observed with ever use of vitamin C (OR=0.76, 95% CI=0.59-0.96) and with ever use of calcium supplement (OR=0.64, 95% CI=0.42-0.97).
  • The inverse association with HNC risk was also observed for 10 or more years of vitamin C use (OR=0.72, 95% CI=0.54-0.97) and more than 365 tablets of cumulative calcium intake (OR=0.36, 95% CI=0.16-0.83), but linear trends were not observed for the frequency or duration of any supplement intake.

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