Metabolic syndrome and endometrial carcinoma

Am J Epidemiol. 2010 Apr 15;171(8):892-902. doi: 10.1093/aje/kwq006. Epub 2010 Mar 10.


The authors examined the association between the metabolic syndrome and risk of incident endometrial and fatal uterine corpus cancer within a large prospective cohort study. Approximately 290,000 women from Austria, Norway, and Sweden were enrolled during 1974-2005, with measurements of height, weight, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, and circulating levels of glucose, total cholesterol, and triglycerides. Relative risks were estimated using Cox proportional hazards regression. The metabolic syndrome was assessed as a composite z score, as the standardized sum of z scores for body mass index, blood pressure, glucose, cholesterol, and triglycerides. A total of 917 endometrial carcinomas and 129 fatal cancers were identified. Increased risks of incident endometrial carcinoma and fatal uterine corpus cancer were seen for the metabolic syndrome factors combined, as well as for individual factors (except for cholesterol). The relative risk of endometrial carcinoma for the metabolic syndrome was 1.37 (95% confidence interval: 1.28, 1.46) per 1-unit increment of z score. The positive associations between metabolic syndrome factors (both individually and combined) and endometrial carcinoma were confined to the heaviest women. The association between the metabolic syndrome and endometrial carcinoma risk seems to go beyond the risk conferred by obesity alone, particularly in women with a high body mass index.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Austria / epidemiology
  • Body Mass Index
  • Cause of Death
  • Cohort Studies
  • Endometrial Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Endometrial Neoplasms / etiology*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Metabolic Syndrome / complications*
  • Metabolic Syndrome / diagnosis
  • Middle Aged
  • Norway / epidemiology
  • Population Surveillance
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Prospective Studies
  • Registries
  • Regression Analysis
  • Risk Factors
  • Sweden / epidemiology