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Light cigarette smoking increases risk of all-cause and cause-specific mortality: Findings from the NHIS Cohort Study


Qin, W and Magnussen, CG and Li, S and Steffen, LM and Xi, B and Zhao, M, Light cigarette smoking increases risk of all-cause and cause-specific mortality: Findings from the NHIS Cohort Study, International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17, (14) Article 5122. ISSN 1661-7827 (2020) [Refereed Article]

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2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) license (

DOI: doi:10.3390/ijerph17145122


Very few studies have examined the association between light cigarette smoking (i.e., ≤5 cigarettes per day) and mortality. The aim of this study was to examine the association of light cigarette smoking with all-cause and cause-specific mortality among adults in the United States. Data were from 13 waves of the National Health Interview Survey (1997 to 2009) that were linked to the National Death Index records through December 31, 2011. A total of 329,035 participants aged ≥18 years in the United States were included. Deaths were from all cause, cancer, cardiovascular disease (CVD) and respiratory disease and were confirmed by death certification. During a median follow-up of 8.2 years, 34,862 participants died, of which 8415 were from cancer, 9031 from CVD, and 2040 from respiratory disease. Compared with never-smokers, participants who smoked 1-2 (hazard ratios (HR) = 1.94, 95%CI = 1.73-2.16) and 3-5 cigarettes (HR = 1.99, 1.83-2.17) per day were at higher risk of all-cause mortality after adjustment for demographic variables, lifestyle factors and physician-diagnosis of chronic disease. The associations were stronger for respiratory disease-specific mortality, followed by cancer-specific mortality and CVD-specific mortality. For example, the HRs (95% CIs) of smoking 1-2 cigarettes per day were 9.75 (6.15-15.46), 2.28 (1.84-2.84) and 1.93 (1.58-2.36), respectively, for these three cause-specific mortalities. This study indicates that light cigarette smoking increases risk of all-cause and cause-specific mortality in US adults.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:light smoking, mortality, prospective
Research Division:Biomedical and Clinical Sciences
Research Group:Cardiovascular medicine and haematology
Research Field:Respiratory diseases
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public health (excl. specific population health)
Objective Field:Behaviour and health
UTAS Author:Magnussen, CG (Associate Professor Costan Magnussen)
ID Code:140536
Year Published:2020
Web of Science® Times Cited:6
Deposited By:Menzies Institute for Medical Research
Deposited On:2020-08-26
Last Modified:2022-08-25
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