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Supporting Smokefree Air & Tobacco-Free Lives

Smoking increases the risk of breast cancer by 30% in women age 55+

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Dr. Stan Glantz of University of California – San Francisco’s Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education draws attention to the finding that smoking increases the risk of breast cancer by 30% in women age 55+.  “This is about the same risk that Ken Johnson and I [Dr. Stan Glantz] estimated based on smaller studies discussed in our paper published in the January 2014 issue of Cancer, Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, than in the new paper.”
On February 12, 2015, researchers at the American Cancer Society, Harvard, and National Cancer Institute published ‘Smoking and Mortality – Beyond Established Causes’ in the New England Journal of Medicine.  “This paper attracted a lot of media attention because it added several new diseases to the list that smoking causes, including breast cancer, which added another 60,000 deaths to the annual toll,” according to Dr. Glantz’s blog.  Dr. Glantz also noted that years ago, in 2015 the California Environmental Protection Agency concluded that secondhand smoke caused breast cancer in younger, primarily premenopausal women.
Based on his research and the findings of this new study, Dr. Glantz emphasizes, “It is time to actively integrate breast cancer into tobacco control efforts, particularly for the CDC and US Surgeon General to add breast cancer to the official list of disease smoking and secondhand smoke ’causes.’  This recognition will be particularly important in campaigns to make casinos and bars smokefree.  A lot of young women work in these environments and are getting exposed to secondhand smoke at a time when it has its strongest effects on increasing breast cancer.”