Cancer screening behaviors among smokers and non-smokers

Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Miami, Miami, FL 33136, USA.
Cancer epidemiology 10/2010; 34(5):611-7. DOI: 10.1016/j.canep.2010.06.017
Source: PubMed


We explored whether smoking is associated with cancer screening behaviors.
We used data from the 2007 Florida Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System and the Florida Tobacco Callback Survey to examine screening behaviors related to four cancer types (breast, cervical, prostate, and colorectal). Using multiple logistic regression analyses, we examined the association between smoking status and health screening behaviors.
For 10 of the 11 cancer screening variables, being a current smoker was significantly associated with being less likely to ever have been screened and also less likely to be compliant with screening guidelines. For breast and cervical cancer, level of nicotine dependence was also significantly related to compliance with screening recommendations; women with higher levels of dependence were less likely to be compliant.
Our results support the notion that individuals' actions related to their health are consistent across different types of behaviors. We found that smokers were less likely to engage in cancer screening behaviors. In addition, among smokers, individuals with greater nicotine dependence had lower compliance with some screening tests. Physicians should ensure that their patients who smoke are receiving appropriate and adequate screening for cancer.

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Available from: Antoine Messiah, Jun 24, 2014
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    • "The fact that fewer smokers engage in early-detection behaviours despite their increased risk is an important paradox to understand. The effect seems to be independent of sociodemographic characteristics (Byrne et al, 2010; Vander Weg et al, 2012), but attitudinal factors may be important (von Wagner et al, 2011). Research to date has focused predominantly on attitudes to lung cancer. "
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    • "Smokers seem to have lower compliance for cervical cancer screening, the most powerful weapon against cervical cancer mortality. Smokers held less positive attitudes towards cervical screening than did nonsmokers [43], and the level of nicotine dependence is also significantly related to compliance with screening recommendations; women with higher levels of dependence are less likely to be compliant [44]. Unhealthy life style, negatively rated life events, lack of social support, coping style, and distress, often associated with smoking, alcohol abuse, and illegal drugs addition, have been reported as risk factors for cervical cancer [45] [46] [47], especially among low-educated women [48] [49]. "
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