Wednesday, April 21, 2010

A new study published in the British Medical Journal states that smoking cessation offers a significant benefit to early-stage lung cancer patients by reducing the progression of the disease.
“The adjusted estimates suggest that the risk for death is halved in patients who stop smoking”, say the researchers, led by Amanda Parsons, research fellow at the UK Center for Tobacco Control Studies at the University of Birmingham, United Kingdom.

“The difference in survival between patients who stopped smoking and those who continued is striking", said H. Jack West, MD, medical oncologist at the Swedish Cancer Institute in Seattle, Washington, and author of the Blowing smoke blog on Medscape Oncology. “This effect is larger than that seen with postoperative chemotherapy”, he added.

This research is both fascinating and promising, but must be considered preliminary. Only a large-scale randomized controlled trial will permit researchers to confidently draw conclusions and make patient care recommendations.

David Zauche
Senior Program Officer
Partnership for Prevention


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