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Back To Vidyya Lung Cancer And Cigarette Smoking Facts

Among Men And Women Of Different Races And Ethnic Groups



Lung Cancer Incidence, Mortality, and 5-Year Relative Survival:

  • In every ethnic group, men have higher lung cancer incidence and mortality rates than women.

  • African American men have the highest lung cancer incidence and mortality rates.

  • Among women, Alaska Natives have the highest lung cancer incidence and mortality rates.

  • Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death among men in all racial/ethnic groups except American Indians.

  • Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in most racial/ethnic groups of women except American Indian, Filipino, and Hispanic women.

  • Overall, lung cancer 5-year relative survival rates are very low.


Chart 1: Lung Cancer Incidence Rates among Women and Men

*Rate not calculated when fewer than 25 cases; rates represent American Indians in New Mexico only. Rates are average annual per 100,000 and age-adjusted to 1970 U.S. standard.

Data Source: Racial/Ethnic Patterns of Cancer in the United States 1988–1992, National Cancer Institute (in press).


Chart 2: Lung Cancer 5-Year Relative Survival Rates for Whites, African Americans, and Hispanics

Data Source: National Cancer Institute Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) Program, 1995 (Whites and African Americans); NCI Initiatives for Special Populations, 1973–1994 (Hispanics).

Lung Cancer and Smoking (American Cancer Society Facts and Figures, 1996):

  • Smoking is responsible for 87 percent of lung cancers.

  • The risk of dying of lung cancer is 22 times higher for male smokers and 12 times higher for female smokers than for people who have never smoked.

White, Hispanic, and African American Adult Cigarette Smoking Rates (National Health Interview Survey):

  • Overall, smoking rates for African American, White and Hispanic men and women have significantly decreased since the 1960's and 1970's.

  • For all ethnicities, men continue to have higher smoking rates than women.

  • African American men have higher rates than Hispanic or White men.

  • White women have higher smoking rates than Hispanic or African American women.


Chart 3: Patterns of Current Cigarette Use Among Adult (18+) White and African American Men and Women

Data Source: National Health Interview Surveys (NHIS), 1978–1993.
For 1978–1991, current cigarette smokers include persons who reported smoking at least 100 cigarettes in their lives and who reported at the time of survey that they currently smoked. For 1992 and 1993, current smokers include persons who reported smoking at least 100 cigarettes in their lives and who reported at the time of survey that they currently smoked every day or on some days.


Chart 4: Patterns of Current Cigarette Use Among Adult (18+) Hispanic Men and Women

Data Source: National Health Interview Surveys (NHIS), 1978–1993 aggregate data.
For 1978–1991, current cigarette smokers include persons who reported smoking at least 100 cigarettes in their lives and who reported at the time of survey that they currently smoked. For 1992 and 1993, current smokers include persons who reported smoking at least 100 cigarettes in their lives and who reported at the time of survey that they currently smoked every day or on some days.


Chart 5: Current Cigarette Use Among White, Hispanic, and African American Adults

Data Source: National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), 1993.
Current smokers include persons who reported smoking at least 100 cigarettes in their lives and who reported at the time of survey that they currently smoked every day or on some days.

White, Hispanic, and African American Adolescent Cigarette Smoking Rates (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Youth Risk Behavior Survey, 1993):

  • White adolescents have the highest smoking rates.

  • African American adolescents have the lowest smoking rates.

  • For all ethnicities combined, adolescent smoking rates progressively increase from the 9th to the 12th grade.

  • Since 1992, the smoking rate has risen by more than 20% among high school students (National High School Senior Survey, commissioned by the National Institute on Drug Abuse).


Chart 6: Current Cigarette Use Among White, Hispanic, and African American Adolescents (Grades 9–12)

Data Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Youth Risk Behavior Survey, United States, 1993.
Smoked cigarettes on >= 1 of the 30 days preceding the survey.


Chart 7: Current Cigarette Use Among Adolescents Grades 9–12

Data Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Youth Risk Behavior Survey, United States, 1993.
Smoked cigarettes on >= 1 of the 30 days preceding the survey.

Recommendations:

  • Continue to emphasize the importance of cigarette smoking prevention and cessation in reducing lung cancer incidence and other health risks.

  • Develop outreach education efforts aimed at cigarette smoking prevention and cessation, particularly among African American male adults and other groups with high cigarette smoking rates.

  • Target adolescents with messages about the benefits of not smoking and quitting.

  • Encourage physicians to talk to their patients about the importance of smoking cessation. Some studies show that patients cite physician recommendation as the primary cause for smoking cessation.

  • Provide access to information on smoking prevention and cessation. Resources include the National Cancer Institute's Cancer Information Service at 1–800–4–CANCER.

The National Cancer Institute is the lead Federal agency for research on the causes, prevention, early detection, diagnosis, and treatment of cancer.

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Editor: Susan K. Boyer, RN
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