Case-control study of testicular cancer, 1988

Connecticut tumour registry data, International journal of epidemiology

1988 Study Abstract

This case-control study was designed to determine whether males who were exposed to diethylstilboestrol (DES) in utero are at increased risk of testicular cancer.

Questionnaires were completed for 79 residents of Connecticut, who were diagnosed with primary cancer of the testes between 1945 and approximately six months into 1980.

An equal number of matched controls drawn from birth certificate records available from the Connecticut State Department of Health Services also submitted questionnaires.

Information included data on past medical conditions of subjects and obstetrical history of mothers.

The major finding of this study was a statistically significant elevated risk for premature birth for the testicular cancer cases.

The study failed to show that DES increased the risk for testicular cancer.

However, in view of the findings from previous human and animal studies of such abnormalities as undescended and hypoplastic testes as well as the consideration that only the earliest exposed birth cohort has reached the age of substantial cancer risk, it would seem prudent for any male who has been prenatally exposed to DES to seek medical follow-up.


Since DES stopped being prescribed in 1971, and since testicular cancer takes time to develop, we believe it’s reasonable to think the study’s cases (diagnosed between 1945 and 1980) do not match DES Sons exact profiles / conditions .


  • A case-control study of testicular cancer using Connecticut tumour registry data, International journal of epidemiology, NCBI PubMed, PMID: 3225080, 1988 Dec.
  • Featured image credit patioyarddesign.

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