Body constitution in young healthy women from breast cancer higher risk families in relation to smoking

Research output: Contribution to journalPublished meeting abstract


Introduction: The purpose of this study was to investigate potential associations between body composition and current smoking in young healthy women from high-risk families. Cigarette smoke contains >7000 chemicals of which 69 are established carcinogens and smoke also acts as an aromatase inhibitor. Smoking is now recognized as a carcinogen for the breast and influences both risk and prognosis. However, the underlying mechanisms need to be better elucidated. One study showed that breast cancer patients who smoked were younger, had a lower body mass index (BMI), smaller breast volumes, but a higher waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) than non-smokers. However, smoking was also associated with a higher frequency of prior oral contraceptive (OC) use. Since breast cancer development starts long before the tumor is clinically detectable, we aimed to study the impact of cigarette smoke on anthropometric factors. Material and methods: Between 1996 and 2006, 269 healthy women were included in a study on the impact of lifestyle factors in women 0.18). However, current smokers had significantly larger standardized waist circumference (78 vs 74 cm;adjP=0.02), and higher standardized WHR (0.79 vs 0.76;adjP=0.003) compared with non-smokers. Conclusion: Current smokers had significantly larger waist circumference and higher WHR, but similar BMI and breast volume compared with non-smokers, although most women had anthropometric measures within WHO's recommended limits. The difference in fat distribution towards more abdominal fat, suggests that current smoking is associated with a more inflammatory and/or androgenic profile at the age when breast cancer is initiated.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Cancer and Oncology


  • aromatase inhibitor, BRCA1 protein, carcinogen, cigarette smoke, endogenous compound, oral contraceptive agent, abdominal fat, adult, body composition, body constitution, body mass, breast cancer, breast feeding, breast surgery, cancer family, cancer patient, cancer prognosis, controlled study, female, gene mutation, height, hip circumference, human, lifestyle, linear regression analysis, major clinical study, nullipara, nurse, oral contraceptive use, prognosis, smoke, smoking, statistical significance, waist circumference, waist hip ratio
Original languageEnglish
Article numberAbstract 4291
JournalCancer Research
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Publication categoryResearch
EventAmerican Association for Cancer Research (AACR) 108th Annual Meeting 2017 - Washington, DC, United States
Duration: 2017 Apr 12017 Apr 5