HealthDay News — Fibroids are associated with an increased risk for ovarian cancer in both Black and White women, with risk modified by hysterectomy status, according to a study published online in Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Holly R. Harris, ScD, from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center in Seattle, and colleagues examined associations of endometriosis and uterine leiomyomas with ovarian cancer risk. The analysis included 3124 Black participants and 5458 White participants, of whom 1008 Black participants and 2237 White participants had ovarian cancer.

The researchers found that the prevalence rates of endometriosis and leiomyomas were 6.4% and 43.2%, respectively, among Black participants and 7.0% and 21.5%, respectively, among White participants. For women of both races, endometriosis was associated with an increased risk for endometrioid and clear-cell ovarian cancer (odds ratios for endometrioid tumors for Black and White participants, 7.06 and 2.17, respectively). In White individuals, the association between endometriosis and ovarian cancer risk was stronger in those without hysterectomy, but no difference was seen in Black participants. In both Black and White women, leiomyomas were associated with an elevated risk for ovarian cancer in those without hysterectomy (odds ratios, 1.34 and 1.22, respectively).


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“Despite the lower occurrence of ovarian cancer in Black women, this group has the highest mortality from ovarian cancer. Identifying how racial differences in access to care and treatment impact this disparity is critical to formulating risk reduction strategies,” Harris said in a statement.

One author disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

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