Even short-term breastfeeding is linked to reduced risk for ovarian cancer

  • Babic A & al.
  • JAMA Oncol
  • 2 Apr 2020

  • curated by Deepa Koli
  • Univadis Clinical Summaries
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Takeaway

  • Breastfeeding is associated with a significantly reduced risk for ovarian cancer, including high-grade serous subtype.
  • Breastfeeding even for

Why this matters

  • Study supports WHO recommendations on breastfeeding, which is thought to offer other benefits for mother and child, as well.

Study design

  • Study of 9973 patients with ovarian cancer (mean age, 57.4 years) and 13,843 unaffected control participants (mean age, 56.4 years).
  • Funding: US National Cancer Institute.

Key results

  • Breastfeeding was associated with a significantly lower risk (ORs; 95% CIs) for:
    • Invasive ovarian cancer: 0.76 (0.71-0.80).
      • High-grade serous subtype: 0.75 (0.70-0.81).
      • Endometrioid subtype: 0.73 (0.64-0.84).
      • Clear cell subtype: 0.78 (0.64-0.96).
    • Borderline ovarian cancer: 0.72 (0.64-0.81).
    • Mucinous subtype: 0.68 (0.57-0.82).
    • Serous tumors: 0.77 (0.66-0.89).
  • Longer mean duration of breastfeeding per child showed inverse association with risk (ORs; 95% CIs): 
    • 1-3 months: 0.82 (0.76-0.88).
    • ≥12 months: 0.66 (0.58-0.75).
  • More recent breastfeeding was associated with a steeper reduction in risk (ORs; 95% CIs):
    • Ptrend=.02.

Limitations

  • Self-reported data.