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Is Quitting Smoking Bad For You?

Lung Cancer discussions, another of the most common forms of cancer

Is Quitting Smoking Bad For You?

Postby Swintun » Sat Jun 21, 2014 2:11 am

My girlfriend had the same concern as the person who asked "if someone who has smoked a long time stops smoking, does their risk of cancer increase?" Your response of "no"(http://en.allexperts.com/q/Quitting-Smoking-2258/Quiting-smoking-causes-cancer.h...) is contradicted on another page(http://baabmallya.sulekha.com/blog/post/2006/10/does-quitting-smoking-cause-canc...). Could you please look into this further and let me and the original question asker on the first link know if this other article is legitimate? It took me a while to find that one article, but I'm no expert, so I’m sure there are more. They may just not be as available, because it would imply that it's unhealthy to quit smoking, and no one really wants to try and prove that. Thank you.

Ben Torres
Posts: 76
Joined: Fri Jan 03, 2014 9:48 am

Is Quitting Smoking Bad For You?

Postby dawayne » Sat Jun 21, 2014 2:42 am

Dear Ben,

I was surprised when this question first came in.

I looked up the source, and it is a correspondence to a journal called Medical Hypothesis:

Are lung cancers triggered by stopping smoking?

Medical Hypotheses, Volume 68, Issue 5, 2007, Pages 1176-1177

Arunachalam Kumar, Kasaragod B. Mallya and Jairaj C. Kumar

So this is not a scientific study but is an observation from a group of clinicians in India.

To be considered seriously the topic would have to be looked at in a careful study and published in a peer-reviewed journal.

I think the observation is flawed as they are only looking at people that have cancer. What you need to do is follow a large group of quitters and see if they get cancer more or less often than smokers that keep smoking. Many smokers may decide to quit when they start feeling some pain or early signs of cancer. Many cancer patients will have recently quit by chance.

Here is a large study of quitters in Japan that clearly showed a lower cancer risk in the quitters:

Cancer Sci. 2007 Apr;98(4):584-9. Decrease in risk of lung cancer death in Japanese men after smoking cessation by age at quitting: pooled analysis of three large-scale cohort studies.

Wakai K, Marugame T, Kuriyama S, Sobue T, Tamakoshi A, Satoh H, Tajima K, Suzuki T, Tsugane S.

Division of Epidemiology and Prevention, Aichi Cancer Center Research Institute, 1-1 Kanokoden, Chikusa-ku, Nagoya 464-8681, Japan. [email protected]

Bottom line. Tell your girlfriend that all evidence says that you are better off quitting and the sooner the better.

I hope this helped,


Michael Dean, Ph.D.

Author "Empty Cribs-The Impact of Smoking on Child Health"

Posts: 1087
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2011 5:03 am

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