Yet another reason for prostate cancer patients to quit smoking

20 Mar 2015

Current smokers and those who have quit smoking less than 10 years previously, have twice the risk of a recurrence of prostate cancer after surgery, according to new research presented at the European Association of Urology.

Study layout and outcomes

An international group of scientists and clinicians from the USA and Europe retrospectively looked at biochemical prostate cancer recurrence in 7191 men who had had their prostate removed by radical prostatectomy.

Of these men:

  • 34.9% were never smokers, 
  • 31.6% were former smokers and 

  • 33.5% were current smokers. 

These patients were followed up for an average of 28 months.



The results showed that after a median of 28 months current smokers had around doubled the chance of the cancer recurring than did patients who had never smoked.

"Even those who had quit smoking within the last 10 years still had a significantly higher risk of cancer recurrence, at about the same level as that for current smokers. It wasn't until 10 years after a patient had quit smoking that the risk of cancer recurrence dropped significantly."

“Anyone who has prostate cancer, would be well advised to quit immediately”

According to lead researcher Dr Malte Rieken (University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland): "This is a new analysis, but it seems to confirm results we have seen in many other types of cancer: basically, smoking increases the risk of cancer recurrence after initial treatment. It's just another reason not to smoke at all, but the fact that the risk drops after 10 years means that anyone who has prostate cancer, would be well advised to quit immediately."

Commenting former EAU Secretary-General, Per-Anders Abrahamsson (Malmo, Sweden) said: "Prostate cancer is a leading cause of cancer death for man in the western world. A number of studies have addressed how diet and environmental factors affect the risk of prostate cancer. This is the first report that clarifies that smoking increases the risk of prostate cancer recurring after surgery and, therefore, a major step forward to advise our patients to stop smoking when diagnosed with prostate cancer."


Source: Science Daily
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