Efforts to prevent teens from smoking have helped narrow the racial disparity in lung cancer incidence and death rates among adults in the United States, researchers say.
Smoking causes most lung cancer cases in the United States. Lung cancer cases have been consistently higher in blacks than in whites at all ages. Since the 1970s, programs to reduce smoking by teens have proven highly effective.
In the new study, researchers analyzed 1992-2006 data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Cancer Institute and found that lung cancer death rates among men decreased by 7.9 percent per year in blacks and 3.6 percent per year in whites. Among women, lung cancer death rates decreased by 4.8 percent per year in blacks and 1.9 percent per year in whites.