Researchers conducted a case-control study to assess environmental and occupational determinants as risk factors of myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) in a Pakistani population. The results were published in Cancer Reports.
In this case-control study, researchers analyzed 600 participants, including 150 de novo MDS cases and 450 age and gender-matched controls. They collated disease characteristics, sociodemographics, and exposure to environmental and occupational determinants, assessed via a questionnaire.
The results showed that individuals who were exposed to arsenic (odds ratio [OR]=31.81, confidence interval [CI] 19.0-53.0, P=0.000) or benzene (OR=1.564, CI 1.07-2.27, P=0.01) using a natural source of water (OR=3.563, CI 2.29-5.53, P=0.000), and patients who were smokers (OR=3.1, P=0.000) were more likely to have MDS. Also, unmarried people were less likely to acquire MDS than married people (OR=0.239, CI 0.15-0.36, P=0.000). The results also showed that uneducated participants were more likely to have MDS than educated participants, and powdered milk drinkers were more likely to have MDS than dairy milk drinkers.
“Our results revealed that arsenic, use of natural source of water and benzene exposure might lead to higher risk of acquiring MDS,” the researchers concluded. “This study would be helpful to understand the aetiology of disease in Pakistani population.”