Washington, Sept 4 : Your tallness might be giving you an edge over others, but the 'leggy' factor may put men at a higher risk of developing prostate cancer, according to British researchers.
To reach the conclusion, the research team conducted their own study on the connection and also reviewed 58 published studies.
In the September issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research, 12 researchers at four universities in England studied more than 9,000 men with and without prostate cancer and estimated that the risk of developing the disease rises by about six percent for every 10 centimeters (3.9 inches) in height a man is over the shortest group of men in the study.
This means a man who is one foot taller than the shortest person in the study would have a 19 percent increased risk of developing the disease.
Still, these increases in risk are a lot less than those linked with other established risk factors, such as age, family history of the disease, and race.
Because of that, the researchers do not suggest that taller men be screened more often than is typical, or that their cancer treatment be altered.
"Compared to other risk factors, the magnitude of the additional risk of being taller is small, and we do not believe that it should interfere with preventive or clinical decisions in managing prostate cancer," said the study's lead author, Luisa Zuccolo, M.Sc., of the Department of Social Medicine at the University of Bristol.
"But the insight arising from this research is of great scientific interest. Little is known on the causes of prostate cancer and this association with height has opened up a new line of scientific inquiry," Luisa added.