Acne is most common among teens, as hormones are changing during those years. Now that you’re older, you probably don’t suffer from acne, but if you once did, new research findings may have you a bit worried.
The study suggests that if you’re a male and once lived with teenage acne, you are at a higher risk for prostate cancer later in life.
Although the link between acne and prostate cancer isn’t fully understood, researchers believe that Propionibacterium acnes are likely to be present in prostatic tissue in prostate cancer patients but not in healthy individuals.
The researchers reviewed data from 284,198 males born between 1952 and 1956. Over 99 percent of the participants underwent conscription examination during the 1970s. The study excluded those with another primary malignancy prior to prostate cancer, missing data, and errors in health information. The study’s final group included 243,187 individuals.
During the average 36.7 year follow-up, 1,633 men were diagnosed with prostate cancer. After adjusting for other factors, the researchers uncovered a hazard ratio of 1.43 among men who had teenage acne. Among those with more severe teenage acne, the hazard ratio was 5.7, suggesting the severity of teenage acne – P. acnes infection – results in a higher risk of prostate cancer.
Although you can’t turn back the hands of time to prevent teenage acne, it’s important that you currently reduce your risk factors for prostate cancer. This includes exercising regularly, eating a healthy diet, not smoking or drinking alcohol (or in moderation), and having yourself screened if you have a family history of prostate cancer.
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