Betel quid not containing tobacco and oral leukoplakia: A report on a cross-sectional study in Papua New Guinea and a meta-analysis of current evidence

Steven J Thomas, Ross Harris, Andrew R Ness, Joachim Taulo, Robert Maclennan, Noah Howes, Christopher J Bain

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Leukoplakia is an asymptomatic, potentially malignant change in the oral mucosa. Previous studies have reported that smoking and betel quid chewing are associated with increased risk of leukoplakia; few studies have reported on these associations in populations where betel quid does not contain tobacco. We conducted a case-control study nested in a cross-sectional study in Papua New Guinea and a systematic review of studies that included chewers of betel quid without tobacco. Our study recruited 1,670 adults. We recorded betel quid chewing and smoking. The prevalence of leukoplakia was 11.7%. In the nested case-control study of 197 cases and 1,282 controls, current betel chewing was associated with increased risk of leukoplakia with an adjusted odds ratio for current chewers of 3.8 (95% CI 1.7, 8.4) and in the heaviest chewers of 4.1 (95% CI 1.8, 9.1) compared to non-chewers. Current smoking was associated with an increased risk of leukoplakia with an adjusted odds ratio for current smokers of 6.4 (95% CI 4.1, 9.9) and amongst heaviest smokers of 9.8 (95% CI 5.9, 16.4) compared to non-smokers. The systematic review identified 5 studies examining risk of leukoplakia associated with betel quid chewing in populations where betel quid did not contain tobacco and that controlled for smoking. In studies that adjusted for smoking, the combined random effect odds ratio was 7.9 (95% CI 4.3, 14.6) in betel quid chewers. The results of this study and systematic review of similar studies provide evidence of the role of betel quid not containing tobacco and leukoplakia. © 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Translated title of the contributionBetel quid not containing tobacco and oral leukoplakia: A report on a cross-sectional study in Papua New Guinea and a meta-analysis of current evidence
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1871 - 1876
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Cancer
Volume123
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2008

Bibliographical note

Publisher: 0020-7136

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