- The number of people with lung cancer who never smoked more than doubled between 2008 and 2014, according to a study at the largest tertiary center for lung cancer resections in the United Kingdom.
Why this matters
- Similar increases among never-smokers in the United States have been reported and if these rates continue to rise, never-smoker lung cancer will be the most common type of lung cancer within 10 y.
- 2170 patients underwent surgical resection for lung cancer between March 2008 and November 2014.
- Funding: Abby Webb Memorial Fund.
- 20% had never smoked.
- The number of never-smokers with lung cancer increased during the study period from 13% to 28%.
- The majority of never-smokers were female (67%).
- Main tumor types were adenocarcinoma (54%) and carcinoid (27%).
- Tumors in the majority of never-smokers detected on incidental imaging (59 patients on chest film, 127 on CT, 32 on positron-emission tomography/CT, and 4 on MRI).
- 5-y survival significantly higher for never-smokers than ex-smokers (60% vs 40%; P<.001); mortality HR for smokers vs non-smokers was 1.65 (95% CI, 1.29-2.11).
- Single-center, retrospective study.
- Smoking status self-reported.