Posts Tagged ‘night shifts’

Can Working Night Shifts Increase Your Breast Cancer Risk?

Wednesday, July 10th, 2013

logo1267406_md New research published in online Occupational and Environmental Medicine concluded that working night shifts for 30 or more years doubles the risk of breast cancer and is not confined to nurses. Researchers assessed 1134 women with breast cancer and 1179 without the disease but of the same age to assess whether working night shifts increased the risk of breast cancer. Women who did various jobs were asked about their shift work over their entire work period and hospital records were used to determine tumor types. Around one in three women in both groups had worked night shift and results showed that those who worked up to 14 years or between 15 and 29 years did not have an increased risk of developing breast cancer.  However, those working 30 or more years were twice as likely to develop breast cancer after accounting for potentially causal factors regardless of being in health care or not,. The numbers of breast cancer cases involved in these results were small, however.  Factors accounting for these results may include melatonin, sleep disturbances, upset body rhythms, vitamin D and lifestyle differences. . The authors concluded “As shift work is necessary for many occupations, understanding which specific patterns increase breast cancer risk, and how night shift work influences the pathway to breast cancer is needed.?