Gall bladder cancer and the role of dietary and lifestyle factors: a case–control study in a north Indian population

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Most patients with gall bladder cancer (GBC) present in the advanced stage with a poor response to therapy. Prevention or early detection is the best way to prevent death, but this requires identification of susceptible subgroups. Keeping this in mind, this study was carried out to evaluate the association between selected demographic, lifestyle, and dietary factors and GBC. A hospital-based case–control study was carried out at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (New Delhi, India). Cases were defined as newly registered confirmed primary GBC patients. Controls were defined as healthy relatives of patients other than that of GBC. Data were collected from February 2008 to October 2009 using a semistructured interview schedule from both cases and controls. Analysis was carried out using SPSS version 15 and Epi-Info version 6. Factors found to be significant in the bivariate analysis were entered in a multivariate logistic regression analysis. A total of 122 cases and 122 controls were included in the study. There was no significant difference in age (P=0.06) and sex (P=0.66) between the cases and the controls. In the bivariate analysis, factors found to be significantly associated with GBC were illiteracy [odds ratio (OR) 8.00, P=0.000], lower socioeconomic status (OR 2.45, P=0.000), parity more than 3 (OR 9.06, P=0.000), age at first pregnancy less than 20 years (OR 2.03, P=0.018), and the use of nonliquefied petroleum gas cooking fuel (OR 4.17, P=0.000). Higher vitamin C intake had a protective effect (OR 0.33, P=0.004). In the multivariate analysis, education, intake of vitamin C, parity, and type of fuel used were significant factors. The risk factors for GBC that have been identified in the present study delineate a high-risk population group that can be targeted for preventive measures including improvement in socioeconomic status, education and lifestyle, and dietary intervention, and avoidance of the use of nonliquefied petroleum gas as cooking fuel.

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