Environmental exposure and risk of uterine leiomyoma: an epidemiologic survey

Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci. 2013 Dec;17(23):3249-56.


Aim: The present study was undertaken to explore the relationship between environmental exposure and risk of uterine leiomyoma in women using an epidemiologic survey.

Subjects and methods: We conducted a case-control survey of premenopausal Han women aged 30-50 years in Nanjing. The subjects included 600 patients with uterine leiomyoma confirmed at the Affiliated Zhongda Hospital of Southeast University between February 2010 and June 2012 and 600 patients with non-uterine leiomyoma or healthy volunteers who presented to the above mentioned hospital for physical examination during the same period. We entered the results into a database and explored the relationship between risk factors and prevalence of uterine leiomyoma using univariate or multivariate non-conditional logistic regression analysis.

Results: The results showed that patients aged 40-45 years had a high prevalence of uterine leiomyoma. The prevalence of uterine leiomyoma in subjects with an education beyond high school was higher than in those with a high school education or less. Exposure to plastic products (odds ratio [OR]: 1.481; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.046-2.097); exposure to cosmetics and other chemicals (OR: 1.954; 95% CI: 1.479-2.582); and consumption of soybean milk (OR: 2.518; 95% CI: 1.894-3.347), food additives, sweeteners, and preserved food (OR: 3.166, 95% CI: 2.247-4.461) had a significant effect on the occurrence of uterine leiomyoma (p < 0.05).

Conclusions: Exposure to plastic products, cosmetics, and other chemicals as well as intake of soybean milk, food additives, sweetener, and preserved foods may be risk factors for uterine leiomyoma.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Carcinogens, Environmental / adverse effects*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • China / epidemiology
  • Cosmetics / adverse effects
  • Diet / adverse effects
  • Environmental Exposure / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Food Additives / adverse effects
  • Food, Preserved / adverse effects
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Leiomyoma / diagnosis
  • Leiomyoma / epidemiology*
  • Life Style
  • Logistic Models
  • Middle Aged
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Odds Ratio
  • Plastics / adverse effects
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Uterine Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Uterine Neoplasms / epidemiology*


  • Carcinogens, Environmental
  • Cosmetics
  • Food Additives
  • Plastics