Associations between bullous pemphigoid and primary malignant cancers: an English national record linkage study, 1999-2011

Arch Dermatol Res. 2014 Jan;306(1):75-80. doi: 10.1007/s00403-013-1399-5. Epub 2013 Aug 4.


We conducted a nationwide record-linked study using all English NHS hospital admission data and mortality statistics from 1999 to 2011 to evaluate the risk of concurrent or subsequent bullous pemphigoid (BP) in a cohort of 2,873,720 individuals with malignant cancers, when compared with a reference cohort. We calculated standardised rate ratios (RRs) based on person-years at risk, comparing the observed and expected numbers of BP cases in the cancer cohort with those in the reference cohort. Overall, the cohort of people with a record of a malignant cancer was not found to be at greater risk of concurrent or subsequent BP than the cohort of people without a record of a malignant cancer (RR 0.96, 95 % CI 0.88-1.04), although elevated risks of BP were found in sub-cohorts of people with either kidney cancer, laryngeal cancer or lymphoid leukaemia. We also similarly analysed the risk of concurrent and subsequent malignant cancers in a cohort of people with a principal diagnosis of BP, and again found no increased risk as compared with the reference cohort (RR 1.00, 95 % CI 0.92-1.09).

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Medical Record Linkage
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms / complications
  • Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Pemphigoid, Bullous / complications
  • Pemphigoid, Bullous / epidemiology*
  • Risk
  • United Kingdom / epidemiology
  • Young Adult