Peripartum blood transfusions are associated with increased risk of cancer: A national retrospective cohort study

Geum Joon Cho, Michael S. Oh, Min Jeong Oh, Keon Vin Park, Sung Won Han, Young Kwang Chae*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: The effect of blood transfusions on the risk of developing primary cancer remains unclear, especially when administered in the peripartum period. Materials and Methods: We conducted a retrospective cohort study of 270,529 pregnant women who delivered between January 1, 2007 and December 31, 2009, with data obtained from three national databases in South Korea. From this cohort, we identified 4569 patients who received peripartum blood transfusions. We calculated hazard ratios (HRs) for new diagnoses of cancer and adjusted them for relevant clinical factors using a Cox proportional hazards model. Results: During follow-up, patients who received peripartum transfusions had an increased risk of developing cancer, with an adjusted HR of 1.16 (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.01–1.34). In a subgroup analysis, this risk was significant only among patients who received 3 or more units of blood, with an adjusted HR of 1.40 (95% CI, 1.10–1.79). Increased risk after transfusions were seen with brain, lung, ovarian, and gallbladder cancers. The difference in cancer risk between the transfusion and no-transfusion groups remained significant during both the first (1.29% vs 1.07%, p < 0.01) and second year (0.74% vs 0.56%, p < 0.01) after delivery. Conclusion: Receipt of 3 or more blood transfusions in the peripartum period was associated with a significantly increased risk of developing cancer. Prospective studies should be pursued to further understand the link between blood transfusions and long-term oncologic risks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)659-666
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Epidemiology
Volume12
DOIs
StatePublished - 2020

Keywords

  • Blood transfusion
  • Cancer
  • Immunomodulation
  • Pregnancy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Peripartum blood transfusions are associated with increased risk of cancer: A national retrospective cohort study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this