Adverse health behaviours in long-term testicular cancer survivors: a Danish nationwide study

Michael Kreiberg*, Mikkel Bandak, Jakob Lauritsen, Thomas Wagner, Josephine Rosenvilde, Mads Agerbaek, Lars Dysager, Cathrine Juel Lau, Klaus Kaae Andersen, Gedske Daugaard

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Background: Treatment for disseminated testicular cancer increases the risk of secondary malignancy and cardiovascular disease. The risk of developing these serious adverse effects may be positively affected by healthy living. The purpose of this study was to identify health behaviours with possible influence on late effects that could be targets for intervention. Material and methods: In this cross-sectional study, testicular cancer survivors diagnosed in the period 1984–2007 from the Danish Testicular Cancer database completed a questionnaire on health behaviours (2014–2016). We estimated prevalence of smoking, alcohol consumption, sedentary lifestyle and overweight. Prevalence ratios described with 95% confidence intervals of adverse health behaviours were stratified by treatment modalities and compared to a reference population by means of logistic regression with adjustment for sociodemographic confounders. Results: In total, 2395 testicular cancer survivors (surveillance, 1175; chemotherapy, 897; radiotherapy, 323), median time since diagnosis 19 years, and 65,289 noncancer males were included, questionnaire response rates were 60% and 54%, respectively. There were more current smokers (prevalence ratio; 1.14, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.03–1.26) and patients with body mass index above 25 kg/m2 (prevalence ratio; 1.10, 95% CI: 1.01–1.20) among testicular cancer survivors than in the reference population. Testicular cancer survivors reported less sedentary lifestyle (prevalence ratio; 95% CI: 0.74, 0.64–0.85) and everyday drinkers were fewer (prevalence ratio; 0.79, 95% CI: 0.68–0.92) than in the reference population. Conclusion: We identified smoking cessation as primary target for intervention studies in testicular cancer survivors. The effect of smoking cessation interventions as part of treatment should be investigated. Whether drug-based intervention is effective in minimising the risk of exposure to conventional risk factors for cardiovascular disease is also of interest.

Original languageEnglish
JournalActa Oncologica
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)361-369
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021


  • cancer survivor
  • germ cell cancer
  • health behaviours
  • lifestyle
  • Testicular cancer

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