Bladder Cancer Coverage from Every Angle

Does a Family History of Any Cancer Increase the Risk for Bladder Cancer?

By: Emily Rhode
Posted: Monday, May 17, 2021

In reportedly one of the largest case-controlled studies of family history of bladder cancer conducted in the United States, Stella Koutros, PhD, MPH, of the National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, and colleagues found nearly double the risk of bladder cancer in patients with a family history of bladder cancer compared with those who had no family history. Additionally, they found that risk for bladder cancer was increased in participants who reported a first-degree relative with a history of tobacco-associated cancer, melanoma, or female genital cancer. These findings were published in Cancer Epidemiology.

A total of 2,631 residents of Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire were included in this study. The researchers analyzed data on 1,193 people with bladder cancer and 1,418 control subjects. A family history of cancer was defined as having at least one first-degree family member who reported having been diagnosed with cancer. Overall, their findings showed that participants with a first-degree family member with bladder cancer had a significantly increased risk of bladder cancer (odds ratio [OR] = 1.8, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.2–2.9) than those with no family history of bladder cancer. The risk to those participants with two or more family members with a history of any cancer increased by 30% compared with the control group (OR = 1.2, 95% CI = 0.99–1.5).

In addition, the risk of bladder cancer went up in participants who reported having a sibling with bladder cancer (OR = 2.6, 95% CI = 1.3–5.3). Participants who reported having a sibling with other cancer also had an increased risk of bladder cancer (OR = 1.2, 95% CI = 0.99–1.5).

Study limitations included self-reporting of demographic and lifestyle factors as well as cancer diagnosis in first-degree relatives. “These findings provide clues for further investigation to help uncover the genetic basis of bladder cancer,” concluded Dr. Koutros and colleagues.

Disclosure: The authors reported no conflicts of interest.

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