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Lung cancer death rates among young and middle-aged white women climb in some states
Date:6/25/2012

ATLANTA June 25, 2012A new study comparing lung cancer death rates among women by year of birth shows dramatic differences in trends between states, likely reflecting the success or failure of tobacco control efforts. The study, published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, finds that while lung cancer death rates declined continuously by birth year for women born after the 1950s in California, rates in other states declined less quickly or even increased. In some southern states, lung cancer death rates among women born in the 1960s were approximately double those of women born in the 1930s.

Lung cancer death rates had been falling among young and middle-aged white women in the U.S., but then abruptly leveled off, reflecting an increase in smoking among girls in the 1960s and 1970s. To study whether this unfavorable trend varied across states, in view of large differences in tobacco control policies, researchers led by Ahmedin Jemal, PhD, analyzed lung cancer death rates from 1973 through 2007 by age among white women for 23 states for which there was adequate data, using the National Cancer Institute's Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) mortality database.

California has consistently led the U.S. in using public policies to reduce cigarette smoking. It was the first state to establish a comprehensive statewide tobacco control program through increased excise taxes (1988), and pioneered local government ordinances for smoke-free work places as early as the mid-1970s. In contrast, public policies against tobacco use have been weaker in many southern and Midwestern states, particularly among tobacco-growing states.

In California, age-specific lung cancer death rates by year of birth continued to decrease in all age groups younger than age 75 starting in the 1990s, with declines beginning earlier in younger age groups. In New York, the age-specific trends were generally similar to those in California except the d
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Contact: David Sampson
david.sampson@cancer.org
American Cancer Society
Source:Eurekalert

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