Attributable and absolute risk of lung cancer death by smoking status: Findings from the Japan Collaborative Cohort Study

Masahiko Ando, Kenji Wakai, Nao Seki, Akiko Tamakoshi, Koji Suzuki, Yoshinori Ito, Yoshikazu Nishino, Takaaki Kondo, Yoshiyuki Watanabe, Kotaro Ozasa, Yoshiyuki Ohno

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65 Citations (Scopus)


Estimating the proportion of lung cancer deaths that can be avoided is important in assessing the potential impact of anti-smoking efforts on the reduction of lung cancer deaths. We calculated the population attributable risk (PAR) and absolute risk of lung cancer death according to smoking status based on the Japan Collaborative Cohort (JACC) Study. The analytic cohort included 45,010 males and 55,724 females aged 40-79 years. Cox proportional hazards model was used to determine age-adjusted relative risks and PAR according to smoking status. We also computed lung cancer mortality according to age and smoking status. In males, 52.2% and 14.8% of lung cancer deaths were attributable to current and former cigarette smoking, respectively. In females, the corresponding figures were 1 1.8% and 2.8%. Among current male smokers, the relative risk was strongly correlated with the intensity and duration of cigarette smoking. In contrast, the PAR was associated with an intermediate level of smoking except for the years of smoking: the largest PARs were observed in those with 20-29 cigarettes per day, 40-59 pack-years and 20-22 years old at starting smoking. Absolute risks were estimated to increase with age and duration of smoking and not to decrease even after cessation. These findings suggest that avoidable lung cancer deaths are primarily among light to moderate smokers who are considered amenable to population-based antismoking strategies. For all current smokers, immediate cessation is encouraged because it offers the only realistic way to avoid a substantial increase in lung cancer mortality brought about by further continuation of smoking.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)249-254
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Cancer
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 10-06-2003

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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