Previous studies on association of exogenous female sex hormones and risk for meningioma have yielded conflicting results. The aim of this study was to evaluate the potential relation between prior use of menopausal hormone therapy or oral contraception and risk of meningioma.
This population-based case-control study was conducted during years 2000-2002 in Finland. All women aged 20-69 years with meningioma diagnosis were identified from five university hospitals, and frequency-matched controls were randomly chosen from population register. A total of 264 cases and 505 controls were interviewed on their use of menopausal hormone therapy, oral and other contraception, fertility treatment, treatment for gynecological problems, age at menarche, and number of children. We also analyzed separately tumors expressing progesterone or estrogen receptors. Of the successfully stained tumor specimens, 86.3% were positive for progesterone receptor and 50% for estrogen receptor.
Postmenopausal hormonal treatment, use of contraceptives, or fertility treatment did not influence the risk of meningioma. In further analysis by hormone receptor status, there was some indication for an increased risk of progesterone receptor-positive meningiomas associated with oral contraceptive use (OR 1.39, 95% confidence interval 0.92-2.10) and other hormonal contraception (OR 1.50, 95% CI 0.95-2.36).
Overall, we found little indication that reproductive factors or use of exogenous sex hormones affect meningioma risk.