Cigarette smoking and risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma subtypes among women

L. M. Morton, T. R. Holford, B. Leaderer, P. Boyle, S. H. Zahm, Y. Zhang, S. Flynn, G. Tallini, B. Zhang, P. H. Owens, T. Zheng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Previous studies of the relationship between cigarette smoking and non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) have yielded conflicting results, perhaps because most studies have evaluated the risk for all NHL subtypes combined. Data from a population-based case-control study conducted among women in Connecticut were used to evaluate the impact of cigarette smoking on the nsk of NHL by histologic type, tumour grade, and immunologic type. A total of 601 histologically confirmed, incident cases of NHL and 718 population-based controls provided in-person interviews. A standardised, structured questionnaire was used to collect information on each subject's current smoking status, age at initiation, duration and intensity of smoking, and cumulative lifetime exposure to smoking. Our data suggest that cigarette smoking does not alter the risk of all NHL subtypes combined. However, increased nsk of follicular lymphoma appears to be associated with increased intensity and duration of smoking, and cumulative lifetime exposure to smoking. Compared with nonsmokers, women with a cumulative lifetime exposure of 16-33 pack-years and 34 pack-years or greater expenence 50% increased risk (OR = 1.5, 95% CI 0.9-2.5) and 80% increased risk (OR = 1.8, 95% CI 1.1-3.2), respectively, of follicular lymphoma (P for linear trend = 0.05). Our study findings are consistent with several previous epidemiologic studies suggesting that cigarette smoking increases the risk of follicular lymphoma. This research highlights the importance of distinguishing between NHL subtypes in future research on the aetiology of NHL.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2087-2092
Number of pages6
JournalBritish journal of cancer
Issue number11
StatePublished - Dec 1 2003


  • Case-control studies
  • Lymphoma
  • Non-Hodgkin
  • Smoking
  • Women

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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