Purpose: Recently developed clinical guidelines suggest that men in families with specific cancer syndromes, such as hereditary breast and ovarian cancer (HBOC), consider genetic testing, especially in the setting of aggressive disease. However, although a family history (FH) of the same disease among close relatives is an established risk factor for prostate cancer (PC), a direct comparison of PC risk for men with each syndrome in a single population is needed.
Methods: The Utah Population Database was used to identify 619,630 men, age ≥ 40 years, who were members of a pedigree that included at least 3 consecutive generations. Each man was evaluated for FH of hereditary PC (HPC), HBOC, and Lynch syndrome (LS) and for his own PC status. PC occurrences (N = 36,360) were classified into one or more subtypes: early onset (EO), lethal, and/or clinically significant. Relative risks (RRs) associated with each subtype, adjusted for important covariables, were calculated in STATA using a modified Poisson regression with robust error variances to obtain corresponding RR CIs for each FH definition.
Results: An FH of HPC conveyed the greatest relative risk for all PC subtypes combined (RR, 2.30; 95% CI, 2.22 to 2.40), followed by HBOC and LS (both with 1 < RR < 2 and statistically significant). The strongest risks associated with FH were observed for EO disease in all pedigree types, consistent with the contribution of genetic factors to disease occurrence.
Conclusion: In this large, population-based, family database, the risk of PC varied by cancer FH and was most strongly associated with EO disease. These results are critically valuable in understanding and targeting high-risk populations that would benefit from genetic screening and enhanced surveillance.