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Lung cancer blog: It's never too late to quit smoking

Back to Lung cancer blog Lung cancer main Non small cell  

Sep 30, 2005

It's never too late to quit smoking

It's never too late to quit smokingCigarette smoking costs about 5 million lives each year all over the world mainly due lung cancer, coronary artery disease and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease that may have resulted from smoking. Lung cancer is responsible for 28 percent of all cancer deaths in the United States. Treatment of lung cancer is progressing slowly with the introduction of newer drugs, but the best strategy would be prevention of lung cancer by avoidance or cessation of smoking.

It is never too late to stop smoking. A male who has been lifetime smoker and lives up to 75 years have 16 percent risk of developing lung cancer. However if he stops smoking at age 60 the risk would be reduced to 10 percent. If he manages to stop smoking at the age of 50 his risk would be 6 percent only. The risk would reduce further to 3 percent he quits smoking at the age of 40. Stopping at 30 years of age would decrease the risk to 1.7 percent. For non-smokers the corresponding risk would be 0.4 percent.

Sorry, I don't have the corresponding numbers for women, but I guess the numbers may be similar.

The message is, it is never too late to quit smoking.

Source: Peto R. Darby et al. Smoking cessation and lung cancer in the UK since 1950.. BMJ 2000:321:323-329

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We engage a never-ending daily struggle to understand and defeat the hidden mysteries of cancer. This is a long and laborious fight, but some moments stand out as grim reminders of the severity of the problem and ruthlessness of the enemy.

Lung cancer blog: It's never too late to quit smoking

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