Page last updated: Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Alcohol consumption and the etiology of colorectal cancer: A review of the scientific evidence from 1957 to 1991.
Since 1957, when a possible relationship was first suggested, there have been 52 major studies dealing with alcohol consumption in humans and the etiology if colorectal cancer. The studies were examined according to the methodology used (correlational, case-control or cohort), the site of the large bowel neoplasm and the type and amount of alcohol consumption as well as the duration of the alcohol consumption. From the data examined, the authors concluded that there is an etiologic link between alcohol consumption and colorectal cancer. This link is, however, weak being of the order of a two-fold risk. This increased risk was found more often in males than females and more frequently with rectal that colon cancer. The increased risk was related almost entirely to beer consumption. There was also some evidence for a relationship with spirits consumption, but non for wine consumption with the exception of sake. The mechanisms involved in this increased risk are not clear. MN

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