‘Increased risk of glioma tumours’ for highly educated people

BT is reporting that a new study in Sweden has shown that highly educated people are more likely to suffer from brain tumours.

Experts examined data from 4.3 million people in Sweden born between 1911 and 1961. They tracked them between 1993 and 2010 and found that 7,100 women and 5,700 men were diagnosed with brain tumours. Researchers then examined lifestyle factors including levels of education, amount of disposable income and marital status.

Men with university level education, lasting more than three years, were 19% more likely to develop a glioma than men who only had up to nine years of compulsory education, according to the study published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

Among women, the risk was 23% higher for glioma, and 16% higher for meningioma – a tumour that starts in the meninges, which are the tissues that cover and protect the brain and spinal cord.

“This study found consistent associations between indicators of higher socioeconomic position and increased risk of glioma in both sexes.” the authors wrote.

More at: ‘Increased risk of glioma tumours’ for highly educated people

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Categories: Health and Higher Education.


  1. In order to make sense of the data we’d need to know what the chances are of developing brain tumours.  If it’s only one in a million then raising the chance by 23% isn’t much.  As it says right at the end of the full article:
    “This is a classic example of where ‘big data’ can find results that are of ‘statistical’ but not of practical significance.”

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