Mortality Risk High among Current Smokers with Cancer

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Mortality Risk High among Current Smokers with Cancer
Mortality Risk High among Current Smokers with Cancer

(HealthDay News) — For Chinese male cancer patients, postdiagnosis smoking is associated with an increased risk of death, according to a study published in the December issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

Li Tao, MD, from the Cancer Prevention Institute of California in Fremont, and colleagues examined the correlation between postdiagnosis smoking and the risk of all-cause death among 1,632 incident cancer patients from 18,244 men participating in the prospective Shanghai Cohort Study. Annual in-person interviews were used to ascertain the change of smoking status after baseline interviews.

The researchers observed a significant 59% (95% CI, 36-86) increased risk of all-cause mortality for patients who continued smoking after cancer diagnosis, compared with those who did not smoke after diagnosis.

On analysis of current smokers at cancer diagnosis, compared with those who stopped smoking after diagnosis, patients who continued smoking had a hazard ratio of 1.79 (95% CI, 1.49-2.16) for all cancers, 2.36 (95% CI, 1.63-3.42) for lung cancer, 1.63 (95% CI, 0.98-2.73) for stomach cancer, 2.31 (95% CI, 1.40-3.81) for colorectal cancer and 2.95 (95% CI, 1.09-7.95) for bladder cancer.

"These data provide new information about smoking and cancer survival, which should inform future research into the contextual and individual-level factors that may result in inadequate attention of smoking among patients with cancer in the post-diagnosis setting," the authors write. "Our study provides strong support to a smoking cessation intervention program that targets cancer survivors."


  1. Tao L, Wang R, Gao YT. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev;2013;22:2404–11.

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