A Way to Become Healthy

Smoking raises breast cancer risk

Female smokers of childbearing age who smoke heavily- especially women who have not been pregnant have a higher risk of developing breast cancer.

Tobacco smoke contains carcinogens, which may increase the risk of breast cancer. Conversely, cigarette smoking also has antiestrogenic effects, which may reduce the risk of breast cancer. However, the association between smoking and breast cancer remains controversial.

Using data collected from an American Nurses' Health Study, initiated in 1976, researchers from Boston examined medical records of 111,140 American women over 30 years for active smoking and 36,017 women over 24 years for second-hand smoke exposure.

About 8,700 of those women went on to develop breast cancer, the most common cancer affecting women worldwide. It was found that those most at risk of developing breast cancer began smoking before age 18 years, smoked 25 or more cigarettes a day or smoked more than 35 years. Pre-menopausal heavy smokers had a 6 percent higher incidence of cancer risk. However, second-hand smoke exposure in childhood or adulthood didn't appear to elevate breast cancer risk, although the researchers noted that such exposure is hard to assess. Light and moderate smoking did not seem to raise breast cancer risk either.

The findings show that active smoking, especially smoking before the first birth, is associated with a higher risk of breast cancer.

2 comments:

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