Overall and central obesity and prostate cancer risk in African men

Ilir Agalliu, Wei Kaung Jerry Lin, Janice S. Zhang, Judith S. Jacobson, Thomas E. Rohan, Ben Adusei, Nana Yaa F. Snyper, Caroline Andrews, Elkhansa Sidahmed, James E. Mensah, Richard Biritwum, Andrew A. Adjei, Victoria Okyne, Joana Ainuson-Quampah, Pedro Fernandez, Hayley Irusen, Emeka Odiaka, Oluyemisi Folake Folasire, Makinde Gabriel Ifeoluwa, Oseremen I. Aisuodionoe-ShadrachMaxwell Madueke Nwegbu, Audrey Pentz, Wenlong Carl Chen, Maureen Joffe, Alfred I. Neugut, Thierno Amadou Diallo, Mohamed Jalloh, Timothy R. Rebbeck, Akindele Olupelumi Adebiyi, Ann W. Hsing

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Purpose: African men are disproportionately affected by prostate cancer (PCa). Given the increasing prevalence of obesity in Africa, and its association with aggressive PCa in other populations, we examined the relationship of overall and central obesity with risks of total and aggressive PCa among African men. Methods: Between 2016 and 2020, we recruited 2,200 PCa cases and 1,985 age-matched controls into a multi-center, hospital-based case–control study in Senegal, Ghana, Nigeria, and South Africa. Participants completed an epidemiologic questionnaire, and anthropometric factors were measured at clinic visit. Multivariable logistic regression was used to examine associations of overall and central obesity with PCa risk, measured by body mass index (BMI), waist circumference (WC), waist-to-hip ratio (WHR), and waist-to-height ratio (WHtR), respectively. Results: Among controls 16.4% were obese (BMI ≥ 30 kg/m2), 26% and 90% had WC > 97 cm and WHR > 0.9, respectively. Cases with aggressive PCa had lower BMI/obesity in comparison to both controls and cases with less aggressive PCa, suggesting weight loss related to cancer. Overall obesity (odds ratio: OR = 1.38, 95% CI 0.99–1.93), and central obesity (WC > 97 cm: OR = 1.60, 95% CI 1.10–2.33; and WHtR > 0.59: OR = 1.68, 95% CI 1.24–2.29) were positively associated with D’Amico intermediate-risk PCa, but not with risks of total or high-risk PCa. Associations were more pronounced in West versus South Africa, but these differences were not statistically significant. Discussion: The high prevalence of overall and central obesity in African men and their association with intermediate-risk PCa represent an emerging public health concern in Africa. Large cohort studies are needed to better clarify the role of obesity and PCa in various African populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)223-239
Number of pages17
JournalCancer Causes and Control
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2022


  • African men
  • Body mass index
  • Central adiposity
  • Obesity
  • Prostate cancer
  • Sub-Saharan Africa

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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