(HealthDay News) — For patients with clear cell renal cell carcinoma (RCC), smoking exposure adversely impacts cancer-specific survival and increases the risk of death from another cause, according to a study published in the March issue of The Journal of Urology.

Behfar Ehdaie, MD, MPH, from the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City, and colleagues examined the impact of smoking exposure on cancer-specific survival in a cohort of 1,625 patients with clear cell RCC. Data were collected from patients treated with surgery from 1995 through 2012 and the correlations between smoking status with advanced disease and cancer-specific survival were determined during a median follow-up of 4.5 years.

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The researchers found that the prevalence of current, former, and never smoking was 16%, 30%, and 54% at diagnosis. A smoking history of 20 pack-years or greater was associated with a significantly increased risk of advanced disease on univariable analysis (odds ratio, 1.43).

After adjustment for age and gender, the correlation was not independent. On multivariable competing risks analysis, pathological stage and Fuhrman grade adversely affected cancer-specific survival.

On multivariable analysis, the correlation between smoking and cancer-specific survival did not achieve statistical significance (hazard ratio, 1.5; 95% confidence interval, 0.89 to 2.52), although there was a trend toward an adverse effect of smoking.

The risk of death from another cause was significantly higher for current smokers than never smokers (hazard ratio, 1.93).

“Treatment plans to promote smoking cessation in survivorship programs are recommended for these patients,” the researchers wrote.


  1. Ehdaie B, Furberg H, Zabor EC, et al. Comprehensive Assessment of the Impact of Cigarette Smoking on Survival of Clear Cell Kidney Cancer. J Urol. 2014; 191(3):597-602.