Risk Factor for Colon Cancer Includes Lack of Sleep


Recent research published in the journal, Cancer, concluded that individuals who average less than six hours of sleep a night have a 50 percent greater probability of colorectal adenomas, precursors to cancer, than those who slept seven or more hours nightly. The researchers believe this is the first study to report on sleep duration and colorectal adenomas.

Telephone interviews were conducted with patients scheduled for colonoscopies. Demographic data and responses to questions on the Pittsburg Sleep Quality Index were obtained. The Pittsburg Sleep Quality Index asks questions about trouble sleeping, hours of sleep a night and others to determine the overall quality of sleep.

Three hundred thirty eight of the 1,240 patients interviewed were diagnoses with colorectal adenomas during their colonscopies. This group reported sleeping less than six hours compared to those without adenomas and this association remained even after adjusting for family history, smoking, and obesity using a waist to hip ratio.

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