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An observational study of cancers among female partners of UK-resident prostate cancer patients.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article


  • Narasimhan Ragavan
  • Philip Grover
  • Sabapathy P. Balasubramanian
  • Andrew C. Hindley
  • Shyam S. Matanhelia
  • Francis L. Martin
Journal publication date8/10/2006
JournalCancer Letters
Number of pages7
Original languageEnglish


Epidemiological studies suggest that environment plays an important role in the aetiology of cancer. Thus, if a cancer (e.g. prostate cancer (CaP)) arises in males, one could hypothesize that risk in co-habiting partners might be elevated. We conducted an observational-questionnaire study in NorthWest England evaluating the medical histories of CaP males and their female partners. Details regarding previous partners (>10 y) were also sought. Self-filled questionnaires were obtained from 548 males, 81 of whom provided information on previous female partners (PFPs) and 448 current female partners (CFPs). Observed rates over a 30-y period (1971–2001) of common cancers (breast, colorectal or lung) in female partners and colorectal cancer in males were compared to the cumulative expected probability (estimated using crude incidence rates for England provided by the Office of National Statistics, UK) using a Chi-Square Goodness-of-Fit test. Colorectal cancers in males were similar to national estimates. Rates for breast, colorectal or lung cancer among CFPs and the total female cohort (CFPs plus PFPs) were also similar to estimates. However, observed rates for breast or lung cancers among PFPs were significantly (P≤0.001) elevated. Our results suggest no evidence of elevated risk among female partners of CaP males.