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Limited evidence is available to acknowledge the association between opium use and liver cancer. In a case-control study, we recruited 117 cases of primary liver cancer (PLC) and 234 age and sex-matched neighborhood controls from 2016 to 2018. We calculated odds ratios (OR) for opium use and 95% confidence intervals (95% CI), using conditional logistic regressions. Compared with non-users the adjusted OR (AOR, 95% CI) for opium use was 6.5 (95% CI, 2.87-13.44). Compared with people who had no history of use, a strong dose-response effect of opium use was observed by amount of use (AOR, 10.70; 95% CI, 3.92-28.70). Cumulative use of opium also indicated that using over 30 gr-year could increase the PLC risk dramatically (AOR, 11.0; 95% CI, 3.83-31.58). Those who used opium for more than 21 years were highly at risk of PLC (AOR, 11.66; 95% CI, 4.43-30.67). The observed associations were significant even among never tobacco smokers (including cigarette and water-pipe smoking). The results of this study indicate that opium use dramatically increased the risk of liver cancer. Because opioids are increasing for medical and non-medical use globally; accordingly, severe health consequences such as liver cancer have to be investigated widely. ©2022 American Association for Cancer Research.


Maryam Marzban, Elham Mohebbi, AliAkbar Haghdoost, Mohammad Aryaie, Mohammad Javad Zahedi, Zaher Khazaei, Mohamad Gholizade, Ahmad Naghibzadeh-Tahami. Opium Use and the Risk of Liver Cancer: A Case-Control Study. Cancer prevention research (Philadelphia, Pa.). 2023 Jan 04;16(1):29-35

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PMID: 36149933

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