HealthDay News — From 2000 to 2016, there was a shift of the obesity-associated cancer (OAC) burden to younger age groups, according to a study published online Aug. 14 in JAMA Network Open.

Siran M. Koroukian, PhD, from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland, and colleagues examined trends in time for age distribution of OACs and non-OACs. Differences by ethnicity and sex were examined using the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results database (2,665,574 incident OACs [70.3% women] and 3,448,126 incident non-OACs [32.0% women] from 2000 to 2016).

The researchers found that the percentage of incident cases increased in the 50- to 64-year-old age group for both arms, ranging from a 25.3% increase in the number of OACs in this age group for non-Hispanic white women to a 197.8% increase in Hispanic men. In the 20- to 49-year-old age group, the change in the number of OACs ranged from a 5.9% drop in non-Hispanic white women to a 94.6% increase among Hispanic women. For those ≥65 years, the increases ranged from 2.5% in non-Hispanic white women to 102.0% in Hispanic women. There was a greater annual increase in the odds for OACs for individuals in the 50- to 64-year-old age group but a decrease for individuals in the group aged 65 years or older compared with non-OACs. Compared with non-OACs, the annual increase in OACs was 0.5% higher in non-Hispanic black men and 1.3% higher in non-Hispanic white men.

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“The findings have important public health implications and suggest that interventions to reduce obesity and to implement individualized screening programs are needed,” the authors write.

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