Lymphoma in the News: Cigarette Smoking Associated with Hodgkin Lymphoma

By Peter Martin, MD

More bad news for smokers: A recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology reports an association between cigarette smoking and Hodgkin lymphoma. The investigators evaluated 17 large cohort studies, involving over one million individuals and 285 cases of Hodgkin lymphoma. They found that current smokers had a 39% higher risk developing Hodgkin lymphoma. Among men, individuals older than 30 or 40 years old, those that smoked more than 20 cigarettes per day, and those that smoked for more than 20 years, the risk was even higher.

The good news is that former smokers did not have an increased risk of Hodgkin lymphoma, but this may have been due to inconsistencies regarding the way “former smoker” was defined in the cohort studies.

The authors conclude, “The health implications of tobacco smoke are vast, having an impact on almost every organ system. Smoking cessation will have a positive impact on public health and should be advised globally.”


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