Approximately 7.69 Million People Worldwide Died of Smoking in 2019

At least 20% of all cancer deaths were attributable to cigarette smoking in 147 out of 152 evaluated MMSAs.

Published in the British medical journal The Lancet, the estimate found that the largest number of smoking-related deaths was recorded in China, at about 2.42 million and nearly 30% of the world’s total. This was followed by India at 1.01 million, the United States at 530,000, Russia at 290,000 and Indonesia at 250,000.

The research team found that in 2019, the number of smokers worldwide exceeded 1.1 billion, with 7 trillion cigarettes consumed annually. The resulting most common diseases were found to be ischemic heart disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), lung cancer, and strokes.

US cancer deaths percentages vary widely by area

A recent US study by researchers at the American Cancer Society (ACS) found that the proportion of smoking-related deaths in selected areas varied by a difference of nearly four times.

Published in Cancer Causes & Control, the study analysed the proportion of cancer deaths that can be attributed to smoking, in 152 metropolitan and micropolitan statistical areas (MMSAs) between 2013 and 2017. The compiled data indicated that 4 out of 10 cancer deaths in parts of the South region and Appalachia, were attributable to cigarette smoking.

Led by Farhad Islami, MD, PhD, the researchers found that the proportion of cancer deaths attributable to cigarette smoking was greater in men than in women in all MMSAs. In both sexes combined, the proportion of smoking-related cancer deaths ranged from 8.8% in Logan (Utah-Idaho) to 35.7% in Lexington-Fayette (Kentucky).

Despite this wide variation, at least 20% of all cancer deaths were attributable to cigarette smoking in 147 out of 152 evaluated MMSAs. Most MMSAs with the highest proportions were in the South region and Appalachia. “This information is important to inform and help evaluate state and local-level tobacco control policies such as state, city- or county-level tobacco taxes and smoke-free air laws, investments in tobacco prevention and increasing access to smoking cessation resources,” said Dr. Islami.

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