Posted: September 9, 2021

Many patients with newly diagnosed lung cancer continue to smoke.  Their attitude can be summarized as, “I’ve done all the damage I can do, so why quit now?”  Often the patient’s doctor, either a primary care physician or oncologist, will try to convince them to quit, saying “It’s never too late.”  So does any of this matter?  An extremely revealing article in the Annals of Internal Medicine shows once and for all that stopping smoking after the diagnosis of early-stage — potentially curable — lung cancer is associated with a substantial improvement in outcome.  As you can see in the graphs survival is much better in the group that quit.  The picture shows this as well.  Dr.  Stark  comments, “The improvement in outcome seen after lung cancer diagnosis with smoking cessation dwarfs that seen with post-operative chemo and/or radiation, and that seen with the latest targeted therapy.  Clinicians should emphasize these findings with their lung cancer patients.  If you want a copy of the full article email me using the fomr on the right. ”