Physical activity and prostate cancer in the Alpha-Tocopherol, Beta-Carotene (ATBC) Cancer Prevention Study (Finland)

Cancer Causes Control. 1998 Jan;9(1):11-8. doi: 10.1023/a:1008889001519.


The association between physical activity and prostate cancer was evaluated in the trial-based cohort of the Alpha-Tocopherol, Beta-Carotene (ATBC) Cancer Prevention Study (n = 29,133). During up to nine years of follow-up, 317 men developed incident prostate cancer. The relationship between occupational, leisure, and combined activity and prostate cancer was assessed in multivariate Cox regression models that adjusted for intervention group, benign prostatic hyperplasia, age, smoking, and urban residence. Compared with sedentary workers, relative risks (RR) and 95 percent confidence intervals (CI) for occupational walkers, walker/lifters, and heavy laborers were 0.6 (CI = 0.4-1.0), 0.8 (CI = 0.5-1.3), and 1.2 (CI = 0.7-2.0), respectively. Among working men, leisure activity (active cf sedentary) was associated inversely with risk (RR = 0.7, CI = 0.5-0.9). This inverse association for leisure activity was observed, with the exception of heavy laborers, for all occupational activity levels, and was strongest among walkers compared with men sedentary at work and leisure, and to a lesser degree among walker/lifters. These results are consistent with a protective effect of physical activity on prostate cancer.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Cohort Studies
  • Employment
  • Exercise*
  • Finland
  • Humans
  • Life Style*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Physical Exertion
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / etiology
  • Recreation
  • Risk Factors