Individuals exposed to arsenic found in drinking water appear to have an increased risk of bladder cancer

In July 2018 researchers from the USA published the results of their study to assess whether any variables, eg age, sex, smoking status, body mass index (BMI), alcohol consumption, and folate intake, influenced the known association of arsenic in drinking water and risk of bladder cancer.  1,213 individuals with bladder cancer and 1,418 individuals with no history of bladder cancer were included in the study. Results showed that amongst former smokers and current smokers those with the highest total arsenic intake had higher risks of bladder cancer when compared to those who had never smoked. In addition, in those classified as normal or overweight using BMI scales, a higher level of total arsenic intake was associated with a higher risk of bladder cancer whereas the risk was not increased amongst those who were obese.  Other variables did not appear to influence the risk of bladder cancer.

Koutros S et al. Potential effect modifiers of the arsenic-bladder cancer risk relationship. Int J Cancer. 2018 Jul 7. [Epub ahead of print]


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