Risk factors for essential thrombocythemia: A case-control study

Alfonso Mele, Giuseppe Visani, Alessandro Pulsoni, Bruno Monarca, Guglielmo Castelli, Maria Antonietta Stazi, Giuseppe Gentile, Franco Mandelli, Roberto Raschetti, Giuseppina Iantosca, Roberto Da Cas, Luigina Ferrigno, Antonella Vitale, Maria L. Vegna, Piero Martino, Serena Merante, Carlo Bernasconi, Alessandra Livraghi, Marina Boni, Roberto ColombiniLuigi Gugliotta, Sante Tura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND. Very little information is presently available regarding risk factors for essential thrombocythemia (ET). METHODS. A case-control study was performed to study the possible association between ET and selected behavioral, occupational, and environmental exposures. RESULTS. Thirty nine patients aged 20 years or older and 156 controls were enrolled in 2 Italian Hematology Departments located in Rome and Pavia. Controls were recruited among outpatients seen in the same hospitals and matched 4:1 to the patients after stratification by age and sex. Odds ratio (OR) estimates suggest an association between ET and hair dye use (in particular the use of dark hair dye for periods longer than 10 years: OR = 5.3; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.4-19.9), living in houses built with tuff (a material with a high concentration of gamma-emitting radionuclides and radon) for longer than 9 years (OR = 5.1; 95% CI, 1.222.1), and selected occupations (electrical worker and shoemaker, OR + ∞ and 2.7; 95% CI, 0.5-16 respectively). CONCLUSION. Behavioral exposures such as hair dyes, living in a tuff house, and working as an electrician are significantly associated with ET development. The data are consistent with those observed in acute leukemias.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2157-2161
Number of pages5
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - May 15 1996


  • essential thrombocythemia
  • myeloproliferative diseases
  • risk factors
  • thrombocythemia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


Dive into the research topics of 'Risk factors for essential thrombocythemia: A case-control study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this