Risk factors of breast cancer among patients in a tertiary care hospitals in Afghanistan: a case control study

Zekrullah Baset, Jamshid Abdul-Ghafar, Yasmin Nadeem Parpio, Ahmed Maseh Haidary

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11 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Breast cancer is the second most common causes of women’s death, worldwide. Data on risk factors associated with female breast cancer in the Afghan population is very limited. The aim of our study was to identifying risk factor associated with female breast cancer in Afghanistan. Methods: A retrospective case-control study was conducted with inclusion of 201 cases and 201 controls. Patient information was collected by interviewing the patient through a structured questionnaire. Histopathological information was collected from the hospital integrated laboratory management system. The data was analyzed by using logistic regression with univariate and multivariable analyses to determine the association between breast cancer and predictors. Results: The results of the current study showed that factors such as: age (OR = 1.02; 95%CI: 0.99–1.04; p-0.148); age at menarche (OR = 0.83; 95%CI: 0.72–0.92; p-0.008); age at first baby (OR = 1.14; 95%CI: 1.07–1.20; p- < 0.001); illiteracy (OR = 1.93; 95%CI: 1.16–3.22; p-0.011); smoking (OR = 2.01; 95%CI: 1.01–3.99; p-0.04) and family history of cancer (OR = 1.98; 95%CI: 1.18–3.32; p-0.009) were significantly associated with breast cancer. However, our study did not demonstrate any statistically significant correlation between breast cancer and some of the predictors that were previously highlighted in literature, such as: marital status, Body Mass Index (BMI), use of hormonal contraceptive, breastfeeding and exercise. Conclusion: Our study demonstrated that age at menarche, and age at first baby birth, illiteracy, smoking and family history of cancer were significant risk factors associated with development of breast cancer among women in Afghanistan. Health education of women regarding aforementioned predisposing factors are therefore, expected to be valuable in decreasing the burden of breast cancer with reduction of its burden on the healthcare system in Afghanistan.

Original languageEnglish
Article number71
JournalBMC Cancer
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021


  • Afghanistan
  • Breast cancer
  • Risk factors
  • Women


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