Cigarette smoking and urinary oestrogen excretion in premenopausal and post-menopausal women

Br J Cancer. 1996 Oct;74(8):1313-6. doi: 10.1038/bjc.1996.536.


Cigarette smoking is associated with a reduction in the risk for endometrial cancer in post-menopausal women and it has been suggested that this is because smoking has an anti-oestrogenic effect. To investigate this, concentrations of oestrone, oestradiol and oestriol were measured in 24 h urine samples from 167 premenopausal women (53 smokers, 114 non-smokers) and 200 post-menopausal women (54 smokers, 146 non-smokers). Among premenopausal women there were no significant differences in oestrogen excretion between smokers and non-smokers. Among post-menopausal women, geometric mean excretion rates for oestrone and oestradiol did not differ significantly between groups, but oestriol excretion was 19% lower (95% confidence interval -34% to -1%) in smokers than in non-smokers. This may partly explain the reduced risk for endometrial cancer among post-menopausal smokers.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Estrogens / urine*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Postmenopause / urine*
  • Premenopause / urine*
  • Smoking / urine*


  • Estrogens