Body mass index, height and risk of lymphoid neoplasms in a large United States cohort

Leuk Lymphoma. 2013 Jun;54(6):1221-7. doi: 10.3109/10428194.2012.742523. Epub 2013 Jan 24.


Results from epidemiologic studies examining associations between body size and risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) are inconsistent, and etiology may vary by histologic subtype of disease. Using Cox proportional hazards regression, multivariable relative risks (RRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were computed for associations of body mass index (BMI) and height with NHL in the prospective American Cancer Society Cancer Prevention Study-II Nutrition Cohort. From 1992 to 2007, 2074 incident cases of NHL were identified among 152 423 men and women. Obese individuals (BMI ≥ 30 kg/m(2)) had 23% higher incidence of NHL (95% CI 1.08-1.40) compared to those with normal weight (BMI 18.5-< 25 kg/m(2)). Height was positively associated with NHL (RR = 1.25, 95% CI 1.10-1.43, sex-specific quintile 5 vs. 1). BMI associations were strongest for diffuse large B-cell lymphoma. Height was most strongly associated with chronic lymphocytic leukemia/small lymphocytic lymphoma and to a lesser extent with multiple myeloma. These findings provide further evidence that body size may play a role in the etiology of NHL, which is of public health importance given the rapid rise in obesity worldwide.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Body Height*
  • Body Mass Index*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lymphoma, Non-Hodgkin / epidemiology*
  • Lymphoma, Non-Hodgkin / etiology*
  • Lymphoma, Non-Hodgkin / pathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk*
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Young Adult