Updated on 17 June 2014
Men who had ever smoked tobacco were approximately 50 percent more likely to die from respiratory diseases than those who had not smoked.
While women in most Asian regions are far less likely to smoke than men, the study also found an increased risk of death from cancer, CVD and respiratory diseases among east Asian women. Approximately 16.7 percent of lung cancer deaths in East Asian women, at least 45 years old were attributable to tobacco smoking in 2004, while for men, this number approached 63.2 percent.
"Our study showed a clear dose-response relationship between the length of time someone smoked and the number of packs they smoked, known as pack-years, and the risk of death from all causes," said Mr Zheng. "Tobacco smoking has now reached epidemic proportions in Asia and it is likely, with the maturation of this epidemic, and the lack of effective tobacco control efforts, smokers will continue to face an increased risk of death from cancer and other diseases."
Mr Zhenming Fu, a former postdoctoral fellow, Mr Xiao Ou Shu, MD, PhD, MPH, and Mr Gong Yang, MD, MPH were also involved in the study, funded by World Health Organization(WHO) and a number of government agencies in several countries, including the US National Institutes of Health.