Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Old habits die hard: Helping cancer patients stop smoking

Date:
November 26, 2012
Source:
University of Michigan
Summary:
It's a sad but familiar scene near the grounds of many medical campuses: hospital-gowned patients, some toting rolling IV poles, huddled in clumps under bus shelters or warming areas, smoking cigarettes.

It's a sad but familiar scene near the grounds of many medical campuses: hospital-gowned patients, some toting rolling IV poles, huddled in clumps under bus shelters or warming areas, smoking cigarettes.

Smoking causes 30 percent of all cancer deaths and 87 percent of all lung cancer deaths. Yet, roughly 50 percent to 83 percent of cancer patients keep smoking after a cancer diagnosis, through treatment and beyond, says Sonia Duffy, University of Michigan School of Nursing researcher. For patients who quit on their own, relapse rates (as in the general population) are as high as 85 percent.

Yet, continued smoking severely hampers cancer treatment, increases cancer recurrence and decreases survival, she says.

While it's easy to dismiss smoking as a lack of discipline or a disregard for one's own health, it's a much more complicated picture for these patients, says Duffy, lead researcher on the review paper, "Why Do Cancer Patients Smoke and What Can Providers Do About It," which appears in the journal Community Oncology.

"Ours is the first comprehensive review study to examine reasons why the very cause of the cancer, namely smoking, in many cases isn't treated," said Duffy, who said she wasn't prepared to find so many hurdles hindering smoking cessation in cancer patients.

"I think what surprised me when I did the review was the multitude of issues that cancer patients face, and that there are so many variables affecting why they don't get treatment, and if they do get treatment, why they may not respond. Nicotine addiction, health issues, emotional issues, psychological issues and system level issues are all in the way."

Other obstacles include limited access to quit-smoking programs, little social support, sleep deprivation, poor nutrition, lack of confidence in being able to quit and socioeconomic status. After back-to-back appointments and grueling chemotherapy or radiation protocols, many cancer patients simply lack time or energy to attend quit-smoking programs, Duffy says.

Depression is another big barrier to quitting smoking, and among cancer patients it's as high as 58 percent, compared to 10 percent in the general population, she says. And, while most lung cancer patients understand the relationship between smoking and their diagnosis, head-and-neck-cancer patients often don't make the connection.

Surprisingly, Duffy's research suggests that only 56 percent of family physicians urge their cancer patients to quit smoking. Most oncology providers suggest quitting, but the oncologist's main focus is on cancer treatment. Duffy's paper suggests that nurse-administered stop-smoking interventions may be the best way to reach cancer patients who smoke, yet many nurses are not trained to conduct cessation interventions. Duffy's next project will examine ways to specifically design quit-smoking programs for nurses to administer to cancer patients.

Duffy also has appointments at the Ann Arbor VA Center for Clinical Management Research and the U-M departments of Otolaryngology and Psychiatry. Other authors include Samantha Louzon of the Ann Arbor VA Center for Clinical Management Research and Ellen Gritz of the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Michigan. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Sonia A. Duffy, Samantha A. Louzon, Ellen R. Gritz. Why do cancer patients smoke and what can providers do about it? Community Oncology, 2012; 9 (11): 344 DOI: 10.1016/j.cmonc.2012.10.003

Cite This Page:

University of Michigan. "Old habits die hard: Helping cancer patients stop smoking." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 November 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121126110429.htm>.
University of Michigan. (2012, November 26). Old habits die hard: Helping cancer patients stop smoking. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121126110429.htm
University of Michigan. "Old habits die hard: Helping cancer patients stop smoking." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121126110429.htm (accessed September 21, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Newsy (Sep. 20, 2014) Sierra Leone is locked down as aid workers and volunteers look for new cases of Ebola. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Changes Found In Brain After One Dose Of Antidepressants

Changes Found In Brain After One Dose Of Antidepressants

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) A study suggest antidepressants can kick in much sooner than previously thought. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) The study found elderly people are much more likely to become susceptible to infection than younger adults going though a similar situation. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

AP (Sep. 19, 2014) A federal jury has convicted three people in connection with an outbreak of salmonella poisoning five years ago that sickened hundreds of people and was linked to a number of deaths. (Sept. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins