Methods: A multicentre (10 European countries) case–control study [Alcohol-Related CAncers and GEnetic susceptibility (ARCAGE) project].
Results: There were 1779 cases of UADT cancer and 1993 controls. History of warts or C. albicans infection was associated with a reduced risk [odds ratio (OR) 0.80, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.68–0.94 and OR 0.73, 95% CI 0.60–0.89, respectively] but there was no association with herpetic lesions, heartburn, regurgitation or medication for related symptoms. Regurgitation was associated with an increased risk for cancer of the oesophagus (OR 1.47, 95% CI 0.98–2.21). Regular aspirin use was not associated with risk of UADT cancer overall but was associated with a reduced risk for cancer of oesophagus (OR 0.51, 95% CI 0.28–0.96), hypopharynx (OR 0.53, 95% CI 0.28–1.02) and larynx (OR 0.74, 95% CI 0.54–1.01).
Conclusions: A history of some infections appears to be a marker for decreased risk of UADT cancer. The role of medical history and medication use varied by UADT subsites with aspirin use associated with a decreased risk of oesophageal cancer and suggestive of a decreased risk of hypopharyngeal and laryngeal cancers.
- aspirin use
- gastroesophageal reflux
- medical history
- medication use
- upper aerodigestive tract cancer