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Male Infertility Linked to Aggressive Prostate Cancer

Men with male factor infertility have a more than two-fold higher risk

MONDAY, March 22 (HealthDay News) -- Men with male factor infertility are more than twice as likely to develop high-grade prostate cancer, according to a study published online March 22 in Cancer.

Thomas J. Walsh, M.D., from the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle, and colleagues compared the incidence of prostate cancer in 22,562 men who had been evaluated for infertility with a matched sample of men from the general population.

The researchers identified 168 cases of prostate cancer. Men who were evaluated for infertility but not necessarily with male factors did not have an increased risk of prostate cancer compared with the general population. But after adjusting for age, duration of infertility treatment, and infertility treatment facility, men with male factor infertility were more likely to develop high-grade prostate cancer (hazard ratio, 2.6).

"The results of the current study provide novel evidence of a potential link between male factor infertility and aggressive prostate cancer risk," Walsh and colleagues conclude. "These results, if confirmed, also suggest that men identified with male factor infertility earlier in life may be considered for prostate cancer screening, given the elevated risk specifically for high-grade disease."

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