WEDNESDAY, March 30 (HealthDay News)-- Liver transplant patients
who quit smoking are less likely to develop smoking-related
cancers, a new study suggests.
Spanish researchers reviewed data from hundreds of patients who
had their first liver transplant between April 1990 and December
2009. Over the average follow-up period of 7.5 years, patients who
quit smoking after their transplant had a lower incidence of
smoking-related cancers than those who kept smoking.
Smoking-related cancers were identified in 13.5 percent of
patients who died during the study period. All in all, 26 patients
were diagnosed with 29 smoking-related cancers.
The types of cancers looked at in this study were lung, head and
neck, esophagus, and kidney and urinary tract (other than prostate)
Some previous studies have suggested that longer duration of, or
stronger, immunosuppression treatment may be associated with
increased risk of cancer among transplant patients. But this study
found no such link.
Instead, the researchers concluded that smoking after a
transplant increases the risk of cancer, and quitting smoking
following the transplant decreases the risk.
The study appears in the April issue of the journal
"As smoking is an important risk factor of malignancy, intervention programs, together with screening programs, may help to reduce the rate of cancer-related mortality in liver transplant patients," study leader Dr. J. Ignacio Herrero concluded in a news release on behalf of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases and the International Liver Transplantation Society.
The American Liver Foundation has more about