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Br J Cancer. 2010 Sep 28;103(7):1093-6. doi: 10.1038/sj.bjc.6605782. Epub 2010 Sep 14.

Smoking cessation and lung cancer risk in an Asian population: findings from the Singapore Chinese Health Study.

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Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, MD3, 16 Medical Drive, Singapore 117597, Singapore.



Smoking cessation is an important strategy for reducing the harmful effects of tobacco, particularly in the prevention of lung cancer; however, prospective data on the impact of smoking cessation on lung cancer risk in Asian populations are limited.


We studied a population-based cohort of Chinese men and women aged 45-74 years--participants of the Singapore Chinese Health Study. Information on smoking, lifestyle and dietary habits was collected at the time of recruitment in 1993-1998; and smoking status was assessed again at a second interview in 1999-2004 (mean interval 5.8 years). Participants were followed up to 31 December 2007, and incident cases of lung cancer were ascertained by linkage with population-wide registries.


Among 45,900 participants, there were 463 incident cases of lung cancer. Relative to current smokers, those who quit smoking subsequent to baseline assessment had a 28% decrease in the risk of lung cancer (adjusted hazard ratio (HR) 0.72; 95% CI (95% confidence interval): 0.53-0.98). The risk was less than half in ex-smokers who had quit before the first interview and maintained their status (HR 0.42; 95% CI: 0.32-0.56).


Reduction in lung cancer incidence with smoking cessation in Asian populations is substantial and can be observed within a few years after quitting.

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