PURPOSE: The social gradient in prostate cancer incidence observed in several studies may be a result of differential access to prostate cancer screening. We aim to assess if socioeconomic status, stress, and marital status are associated with prostate cancer risk in a population with free access to health care. METHODS: The 5,496 men who participated in the Copenhagen City Heart Study were asked about their income, educational level, stress level, and marital status during 1981-1983. These men were prospectively followed up in the Danish Cancer Registry until the end of 2002 and fewer than 0.1 % were lost to follow-up. RESULTS: During follow-up, 157 men were diagnosed with prostate cancer. Neither high income (HR = 1.17, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.78-1.76) nor high education (HR = 1.22; 95% CI: 0.76-1.96) were associated with risk of prostate cancer. There were also no differences in prostate cancer risk according to stress (HR = 0.99; 95% CI: 0.90-1.09) or marital status. CONCLUSION: In a racially homogeneous population of Caucasians with free access to health care, we found no evidence of a relation between sociodemographic variables or stress and subsequent risk of prostate cancer.
Keywords: Adult; Aged; Aged, 80 and over; Cohort Studies; Demography; Denmark; Humans; Incidence; Longitudinal Studies; Male; Marital Status; Middle Aged; Prospective Studies; Prostatic Neoplasms; Risk Factors; Social Class; Stress, Psychological