To provide new leads regarding occupational prostate cancer risk factors, we linked 36,269 prostate cancer cases reported to the Swedish National Cancer Registry during 1961 to 1979 with employment information from the 1960 National Census. Standardized incidence ratios for prostate cancer, within major (1-digit), general (2-digit), and specific (3-digit) industries and occupations, were calculated. Significant excess risks were seen for agriculture-related industries, soap and perfume manufacture, and leather processing industries. Significantly elevated standardized incidence ratios were also seen for the following occupations: farmers, leather workers, and white-collar occupations. Our results suggest that farmers; certain occupations and industries with exposures to cadmium, herbicides, and fertilizers; and men with low occupational physical activity levels have elevated prostate cancer risks. Further research is needed to confirm these findings and identify specific exposures related to excess risk in these occupations and industries.
From George Washington University, School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Public Health Program of Epidemiology, Washington, D.C. (Ms Sharma-Wagner); the National Cancer Institute, Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, Bethesda, Md. (Mr Chokkalingam, Dr Stone, Dr Hsing); the National Board of Occupational Safety and Health, Solna, Sweden (Dr Malker); and the International Epidemiology Institute, Rockville, Md. (Dr McLaughlin).
Address correspondence to: Ann W. Hsing, PhD, Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, EPS 7058, MSC 7234, 6120 Executive Boulevard, Bethesda, MD 20892-7234; e-mail hsinga @exchange.nih.gov.