A new analysis of data has revealed that cigarette smoking is deadlier than it was previously thought. Until this study, it was stated by the U.S. surgeon general that around 480,000 Americans die every year as a result of cigarette smoking, but a new analysis of data revealed that the figure may actually be around 575,000.
The new study that yielded these results was published in the New England Journal of Medicine and it appears that the 21 causes of death that have been blamed on smoking accounted for around 83% of the deaths among people who smoked. All the other additional diseases that led to the deaths of the rest of 17% included prostate cancer, hypertensive heart disease, renal failure and breast cancer. Out of these 17%, a minute number of deaths were due to accident and suicide.
Researchers from the National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society combined the data from five health studies that are still ongoing. They included 954,029 women and men (both smokers and non-smokers) whose health was tracked starting with January 1, 2000.
The results of the study revealed that between 2000 and 2011 19% of the smokers had died and so did 23% of the former smokers. 19% of the people who had never smoked died in that time period.
It was also revealed that smokers were more likely to die than non-smokers from a previously established smoking-related illness, such as heart disease, stroke, pneumonia, diabetes, cancer of the liver, lip, larynx, stomach, the lung and the pancreas among other diseases. Again, the majority of death were caused by these diseases, but not all of them.
The study showed that 17% of deaths of female smokers and 15% of deaths of male smokers were traced back to other causes that hadn’t previously been connected to smoking. For example, women who smoked were 30% more likely to die of breast cancer than women who didn’t smoke. Men who smoked were 40% more likely to die of prostate cancer than men who didn’t smoke.
Also, the risk of death cause by an infection was twice as high for people who smoked than for those who didn’t. Same for hypertensive renal disease, a range of digestive diseases and hypertension.
It was also found that the more cigarettes a person smokes a day, the bigger the risk of dying from breast cancer, kidney failure and infections.
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