A recent study has hinted that male pattern baldness could be an indicator of future incidence of Prostate Cancer. Researchers have discovered that men with pattern baldness could be at a higher risk for developing an aggressive form of prostate cancer in comparison to their compatriots who are not bald or balding.
Prostate cancer is one of the most common forms of cancer in men of all races in the US. According to CDC Prostate cancer occurs at a rate of 128 cases per 100,000 at risk males. This is almost double the rate of male lung cancer and three times the incidence of colorectal cancer.
Black men have a higher incidence, the risk factors and indicators of future incidence of prostate cancer have remained largely elusive. The recent study could at least give some indicators of aggressive form of prostate cancer. The study was published in the September 15 issue of the Journal of Clinical Oncology.
The relation between male pattern baldness and prostate cancer was studied by Michael Cook, an epidemiologist in the National Cancer Institute’s Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, and his colleagues. The study explored if men who took part in the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal and Ovarian (PLCO) Cancer Screening Trial showed any link between bald patterns and the incidence of prostate cancer.
The study found that a little over 39,000 men in the PLCO cohort between the ages of 55 and 74 who recalled their hair-loss patterns.These men were not diagnosed with cancer when they enrolled and the hair loss recall was for their 45th year of life. 18 percent of the men remembered having male pattern baldness at 45. Over 1,100 men were ultimately diagnosed with prostate cancer, and almost 600 of these cases involved aggressive prostate cancer.
In comparison with no baldness, baldness in the front and moderate crown baldness were linked with elevated risks of aggressive prostate cancer later in life. It was 39% more for men with baldness at 45 to develop aggressive prostate cancer as compared with men without balding. The link was insignificant in other forms of prostate cancer.
Cook said, “It is conceivable that, in the future, male pattern baldness may play a small role in estimating risk of prostate cancer and may contribute to discussions between doctors and patients about prostate cancer screening.”