Navigation Links
Study: Children abused by parents face increased cancer risk
Date:7/17/2012

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Frequent abuse by a parent can increase a child's cancer risk in adulthood, and the effects are especially significant when mothers abuse their daughters and fathers abuse their sons, according to new research from Purdue University.

"People often say that children are resilient and they'll bounce back, but we found that there are events that can have long-term consequences on adult health," said Kenneth Ferraro, distinguished professor of sociology and director of Purdue's Center on Aging and the Life Course. "In this case, people who were frequently emotionally or physically abused by their parents were more likely to have cancer in adulthood, and the link was greater when fathers abused sons and mothers abused daughters. Overall, the more frequent and intense the abuse, the more it elevated the cancer risk.

"We would like to see child abuse noted as an environmental factor that can increase cancer occurrence in adulthood. More research on this topic also could help mediate the effects or improve interventions to help abused children."

The research, which was conducted with sociology and gerontology graduate student Patricia Morton, was funded by the National Institute on Aging and is published online by the Journal of Aging and Health.

"We started examining a variety of childhood misfortunes, including abuse, and when these were all combined, we found that men with the most stressors during childhood were more likely to develop cancer," Morton said. "Second, we found that when children were abused by their same-sex parent, it increased their cancer risk."

The researchers can't say exactly why that is, but a possible reason is the effect of the greater social bond between same-sex children and parents.

"Other studies have shown that if a mother smokes, the daughter is more likely to smoke, and the same relationship is found when sons mirror their father's behavior," Morton said. "More research is needed, but another possibility is that men may be more likely to physically abuse their sons, and mothers are more likely to physically abuse their daughters."

The study's findings were based on survey data from 2,101 adults in two waves of the National Survey of Midlife Development in the United States. Abuse was one of many childhood misfortunes - including poverty, loss of parent and family educational status - that researchers examined to determine if there was a link to cancer in adulthood. In the first analysis, the research team found that men who experienced the most cumulative stressors during childhood were more likely to have cancer. This was not true with women, and this suggests that men and women may have different responses to childhood stressors, Morton said.

The second analysis looked at each category of misfortune, and this is where the connection between abuse and cancer was revealed. Survey participants were not directly asked if they were abused, but abuse was defined by survey answers to questions such as how frequently a parent, sibling or other person insulted or swore at them as a child; refused to talk them; threatened to hit them; pushed, grabbed or shoved; threw something at them; kicked, bit or hit them with a fist; choked them; or burned or scalded them. The frequency of these abuses also was identified. The link was still there when controlled for the adults' age, lifestyle choices and economic status, but the researchers would like to look closer at these mechanisms.

"It also is likely," Ferraro said, "that the effect between child abuse and cancer is underrepresented in our study, because people who suffered abuse and were then incarcerated, placed in a mental institution or died were not included in this survey of adults. These groups may represent people with more acute and severe effects from abuse, and even though they are omitted, we still find a link."

The researchers are now examining potential links between child abuse and other health outcomes, including heart attacks and types of cancer.

"The connection between negative childhood events and mental health is accepted, and these findings reinforce that such events can also have a long-lasting effect on a person's physical health," Morton said. "It's shocking just how much the damage sticks, and it is a reminder that childhood, which is defined by rapidly changing biological systems, is a sensitive period of development."

In addition to Morton and Ferraro, Markus Schafer, an assistant professor of sociology at the University of Toronto and former Purdue graduate student, also participated on the research team. The National Survey of Midlife Development in the United States is sponsored by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Network on Successful Midlife Development.


'/>"/>

Contact: Amy Patterson Neubert
apatterson@purdue.edu
765-494-9723
Purdue University
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Study: Women not getting enough exercise; at risk of developing metabolic syndrome
2. Study: Insomnia takes toll on tinnitus patients
3. Study: No link between depression, nasal obstruction
4. Study: More Pre-Teens Get Vaccines When Middle Schools Require Them
5. Study: Kids Who Sleep in Parents Bed Less Likely to Be Overweight
6. OHSU study: Misdiagnosis of MS is costing health system millions per year
7. UW study: Sleep apnea associated with higher mortality from cancer
8. Study: Heart damage after chemo linked to stress in cardiac cells
9. STeleR study: Telerehab improves functioning after stroke
10. Study: Willingness to be screened for dementia varies by age but not by sex, race or income
11. Study: 21 percent of newly admitted nursing home residents sustain a fall during their stay
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Study: Children abused by parents face increased cancer risk
(Date:12/8/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... December 08, 2016 , ... ... technologies and development solutions for drugs, biologics and consumer health products, today announced ... was set up in 2006 as a non-profit organization to unite pharmaceutical and ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... 08, 2016 , ... Today’s patients are encouraged to be ... SIGVARIS has created a new line of anti-embolism stockings to help prevent a ... benefits of graduated compression when transitioning from recovery to early rehabilitation. , The ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... December 08, 2016 , ... The ... from offices headquartered in Hamilton County, is embarking on a charity drive with ... in finding new homes for orphaned or neglected senior dogs in the Cincinnati ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... December 08, 2016 , ... The Compretta ... commercial and residential clients in and around the Hancock County area, is announcing the ... Hancock County Food Pantry. , The Hancock County Food Pantry has worked for more ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... 07, 2016 , ... Students attending Envision’s summer 2017 ... get hands-on experience in an emergency medical simulation, When Care is Hours Away. ... real-life medical skills that are critical success in a future career and beyond. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/8/2016)... Research and Markets has announced the addition of the ... Usability - Forecast to 2025" report to their offering. ... , , ... at a CAGR of around 3.2% from 2015 to 2025. Some ... in extracellular microelectrode arrays and intracellular microelectrodes, research in left-to-right shunt ...
(Date:12/8/2016)...   TriNetX , the health research network, ... signed a membership agreement to join the network ... cures. The TriNetX network is comprised ... globally, biopharmaceutical companies and contract research organizations (CROs) ... site selection, patient recruitment, and collaborative research across ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... Dec. 8, 2016  Pennsylvania Physician General Dr. ... and Alcohol Programs Gary Tennis released ... known as benzodiazepines, developed with the help of ... medications that are frequently prescribed for anxiety or ... used with opioid pain medications, benzodiazepines pose a ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: