Use of skincare products and risk of cancer of the breast and endometrium: a prospective cohort study
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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OriginalversjonEnvironmental Health. 2019, 18, 105. 10.1186/s12940-019-0547-6
Background Concerns have been raised that extensive use of personal care products that contain endocrine disrupting compounds increase the risk of hormone sensitive cancers. Objective To assess the effect of skincare product use on the risk of pre- and postmenopausal breast cancer, estrogen receptor positive (ER+) and negative (ER-) breast cancer and cancer of the endometrium. Methods We used data from 106,978 participants in the population-based Norwegian Women and Cancer cohort. Participants were categorized into non-, light, moderate, frequent and heavy users of skincare products based on self-reported use of hand and facial cream and body lotion. Cancer incidence information from the Cancer Registry of Norway was linked to individual data through the unique identity number of Norwegian citizens. Multivariable Cox proportional hazard regression was used to assess the effect of skincare product use on the risk of cancer of the breast and endometrium. We used multiple imputation by chained equations to evaluate the effect of missing data on observed associations. Results We found no associations between use of skincare products and incidence of premenopausal breast cancer (frequent/heavy versus non−/light use: hazard ratio [HR] =1.10, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.92–1.32), postmenopausal breast cancer (heavy versus light use: HR = 0.87, 95% CI: 0.65–1.18, frequent versus light use: HR = 0.97, 95% CI: 0.88, 1.07) or endometrial cancer (frequent/heavy versus non−/light use: HR = 0.97, 95% CI: 0.79–1.20). Use of skincare products did not increase the risk of ER+ or ER- breast cancer and there was no difference in effect across ER status (0.58 ≤ pheterogeneity ≤ 0.99). The magnitude and direction of the effect estimates based on complete case analyses and multiple imputation were similar. Conclusion Heavy use of skincare products, i.e. creaming the body up to two times per day during mid-life, did not increase the risk of cancer of the breast or endometrium.