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Height and risk of colorectal cancer: a meta-analysis

Song, Xinyuana; Gong, Xiuzhenb; Zhang, Tonga; Jiang, Wenjiea

European Journal of Cancer Prevention: November 2018 - Volume 27 - Issue 6 - p 521–529
doi: 10.1097/CEJ.0000000000000390
Review Article: Gastrointestinal Cancer

Several epidemiological studies have investigated the relationship between height and risk of colorectal cancer (CRC), but the results were inconsistent. Thus, a meta-analysis of observational studies was carried out to clarify this association. A literature search was performed in PubMed and Web of Science databases for all relevant studies up to 25 May 2016. The random-effects model was used to calculate the pooled relative risks (RRs) and restricted cubic spline model was adopted for the doseresponse analysis. A total of 31 studies involving 13 077 848 participants with 93 818 cases were included. The pooled RR (95% confidence interval) of CRC for the highest versus the lowest category of height was 1.25 (1.18–1.32); the pooled RR was 1.32 (1.22–1.43) for colon cancer and 1.12 (1.05–1.19) for rectal cancer for the highest versus the lowest category of height. A nonlinear relationship was found between height and the risk of CRC in the doseresponse analysis (P nonlinearity=0.0024). This meta-analysis indicates that height is associated with an increased risk of CRC.

aDepartment of Epidemiology and Health Statistics, the School of Public Health of Qingdao University

bSurgical Department, Songshan Hospital of Qingdao University, Qingdao, Shandong Province, People’s Republic of China

Correspondence to Wenjie Jiang, PhD, Department of Epidemiology and Health Statistics, The School of Public Health of Qingdao University, Shandong Province, Qingdao 266021, People’s Republic of China Tel: +86 532 829 91712; fax: +86 532 838 01449; e-mail:

Received July 20, 2016

Accepted June 12, 2017

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