BackgroundOvarian cancer incidence differs substantially by race/ethnicity, but the reasons for this are not well understood. Data were pooled from the African American Cancer Epidemiology Study (AACES) and 11 case-control studies in the Ovarian Cancer Association Consortium (OCAC) to examine racial/ethnic differences in epidemiological characteristics with suspected involvement in epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) aetiology.
MethodsWe used multivariable logistic regression to estimate associations for 17 reproductive, hormonal and lifestyle characteristics and EOC risk by race/ethnicity among 10 924 women with invasive EOC (8918 Non-Hispanic Whites, 433 Hispanics, 911 Blacks, 662 Asian/Pacific Islanders) and 16 150 controls (13 619 Non-Hispanic Whites, 533 Hispanics, 1233 Blacks, 765 Asian/Pacific Islanders). Likelihood ratio tests were used to evaluate heterogeneity in the risk factor associations by race/ethnicity.
ResultsWe observed statistically significant racial/ethnic heterogeneity for hysterectomy and EOC risk (P = 0.008), where the largest odds ratio (OR) was observed in Black women [OR = 1.64, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.34-2.02] compared with other racial/ethnic groups. Although not statistically significant, the associations for parity, first-degree family history of ovarian or breast cancer, and endometriosis varied by race/ethnicity. Asian/Pacific Islanders had the greatest magnitude of association for parity (≥3 births: OR = 0.38, 95% CI = 0.28-0.54), and Black women had the largest ORs for family history (OR = 1.77, 95% CI = 1.42-2.21) and endometriosis (OR = 2.42, 95% CI = 1.65-3.55).
ConclusionsAlthough racial/ethnic heterogeneity was observed for hysterectomy, our findings support the validity of EOC risk factors across all racial/ethnic groups, and further suggest that any racial/ethnic population with a higher prevalence of a modifiable risk factor should be targeted to disseminate information about prevention.