(HealthDay News) – Alcohol consumption seems to be associated with increased endometriosis risk, according to a meta-analysis published in the August issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Fabio Parazzini, MD, from the University of Milan, and colleagues conducted a literature review to identify all full-length, case-control and cohort studies published as original articles in English up to May 2012.

The researchers found that, based on 15 included studies, for any alcohol intake vs. no alcohol intake, the summary estimate was 1.24. The relative risk estimates were 1.14 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.86–1.52), 1.23 (95% CI, 1.08–1.4), and 1.19 (95% CI, 0.99–1.43) for infrequent, moderate/regular, and heavy alcohol intake, respectively, vs. no alcohol intake. For current and former drinkers (reported in three studies), the relative risk estimates were 1.42 (95% CI, 1.14–1.76) and 1.09 (95% CI, 0.83–1.43), respectively.

“The present meta-analysis provides evidence for an association between alcohol consumption and endometriosis risk,” the authors write. “Further studies are needed to clarify whether alcohol consumption may exacerbate an existing disease or could be related to the severity of the disease.”

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