Childhood solid tumours in relation to infections in the community in Cumbria during pregnancy and around the time of birth

H. O. Dickinson, T. A. Nyari, Louise Parker

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29 Citations (Scopus)


In a retrospective cohort study of all 99976 live births in Cumbria, 1975-1992, we investigated whether higher levels of community infections during the mother's pregnancy and in early life were risk factors for solid tumours (brain/spinal and other tumours), diagnosed 1975-1993 under age 15 years. Logistic regression was used to relate risk to incidente of community infections in three prenatal and two postnatal quarters. There was an increased risk of brain/spinal tumours among children exposed around or soon after birth to higher levels of community infections, in particular measles (OR for trend=2.1, 95%Cl:1.3-3.6, P=0.008) and influenza (OR for exposure=3.3, 95%Cl:1.5-7.4, P=0.005). There was some evidente of an association between exposure to infections around and soon after birth and risk of other tumours, but this may have been a chance finding. The findings are consistent with other recent epidemiological studies suggesting brain tumours may be associated with perinatal exposure to infections.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)746-750
Number of pages5
JournalBritish journal of cancer
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Sep 23 2002



  • Children cancer
  • Epidemiology
  • Infections
  • Solid tumours

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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