By Pankaj, US correspondent, [RxPG] Cigarette smoking, heavy alcohol consumption, and hepatitis B infection are all independent risk factors for death from liver cancer, but they do not interact synergistically, according to a new study.
Liver cancer is one of the most widespread cancers in the world, particularly in Asia and Africa where hepatitis and aflatoxin exposures are common. Risk factors include chronic alcohol consumption, cigarette smoking, dietary aflatoxin exposure, hepatitis B infection, and hepatic cirrhosis, but there has been limited exploration of the combined effects of these exposures.
Sun Ha Jee, Ph.D., M.H.S., of Yonsei University, in Seoul, Korea, and colleagues conducted a prospective cohort study of more than 1.2 million Korean men and women to assess the independent effects and interactions of three risk factors for liver cancer: cigarette smoking, heavy alcohol consumption, and hepatitis B infection. All three risk factors were independently associated with an increased risk of death from liver cancer, but there was no interaction between them.