Sedentary behaviour in relation to ovarian cancer risk: a systematic review and meta-analysis

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A new paper titled “Sedentary behaviour in relation to ovarian cancer risk: a systematic review and meta-analysis” has recently been published in the European Journal of Epidemiology. The publication is available here (open access). An abstract of the paper and citation details are below.


Sedentary behaviour is an emerging risk factor for several site-specific cancers. Ovarian cancers are often detected at late disease stages and the role of sedentary behaviour as a modifiable risk factor potentially contributing to ovarian cancer risk has not been extensively examined. We systematically searched relevant databases from inception to February 2020 for eligible publications dealing with sedentary behaviour in relation to ovarian cancer risk. We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis, calculating summary relative risks (RR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) using a random-effects model. We calculated the E-Value, a sensitivity analysis for unmeasured confounding. We tested for publication bias and heterogeneity. Seven studies (three prospective cohort studies and four case–control studies) including 2060 ovarian cancer cases were analysed. Comparing highest versus lowest levels of sedentary behaviour, the data indicated a statistically significant increase in the risk of ovarian cancer in relation to prolonged sitting time (RR = 1.29, 95% CI = 1.07–1.57). Sub-analyses of prospective cohort studies (RR = 1.33, 95% CI = 0.92–1.93) and case–control studies (RR = 1.28, 95% CI = 0.98–1.68) showed statistically non-significant results. Sensitivity analysis showed that an unmeasured confounder would need to be related to sedentary behaviour and ovarian cancer with a RR of 1.90 to fully explain away the observed RR of 1.29. Our analyses showed a statistically significant positive association between sedentary behaviour and ovarian cancer risk.


Biller, V.S., Leitzmann, M.F., Sedlmeier, A.M. et al. Sedentary behaviour in relation to ovarian cancer risk: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Eur J Epidemiol (2021).

To read the full article, please visit this link.

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