The impact of the nurses' health study on population health: Prevention, translation, and control

Graham A. Colditz, Sydney E. Philpott, Susan E. Hankinson

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives. To summarize the overall impact of the Nurses' Health Study (NHS) over the past 40 years on the health of populations through its contributions on prevention, translation, and control. Methods. We performed a narrative review of the findings of the NHS, NHS II, and NHS3 between 1976 and 2016. Results.TheNHShas generated significantfindings about the associations between (1) smoking and type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, colorectal and pancreatic cancer, psoriasis, multiple sclerosis, and eye diseases; (2) physical activity and cardiovascular diseases, breast cancer, psoriasis, and neurodegeneration; (3) obesity and cardiovascular diseases, numerous cancer sites, psoriasis, multiple sclerosis, kidney stones, and eye diseases; (4) oral contraceptives and cardiovascular disease, melanoma, and breast, colorectal, and ovarian cancer; (5) hormone therapy and cardiovascular diseases, breast and endometrial cancer, and neurodegeneration; (6) endogenous hormones and breast cancer; (7) dietary factors and type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, breast and pancreatic cancer, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, neurodegeneration, multiple sclerosis, kidney stones, and eye diseases; and (8) sleep and shift work and chronic diseases. Conclusions. The NHS findings have influenced public health policy and practice both locally and globally to improve women's health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1540-1545
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican journal of public health
Volume106
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2016

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