Friday, February 21, 2014

Smoking correlation and lung cancer: recent evidence and a discussion

Smoking and lung cancer: recent evidence and a discussion of some questions:

The growing and consistent body of evidence has had no noticeable effect upon the viewpoint of a small but important group of individuals who would deny a causal role of cigarette smoking in cancer of the lung. Among these critics are Little29 and Hartnett30, spokesmen for the American tobacco industry. Berkson31,32 has been critical of many aspects of the statistical studies, and his reservations are, in part, also evident in papers by Neyman33 and Arkin34. More general objections by Fisher35,36, Greene37, Hueper38, Macdonald39. Rigdon40, and Rosenblatt41 have been published.
We have reviewed the criticism that have been made regarding the cigarette-lung cancer relationship in the light of new evidence. In this review we have several objectives: a) to point out recorded facts that directly answer some of the criticisms; b) to define more precisely some inadequacies of information, with the hope that this will lead to further research. The particular references we have used were selected because in our opinion the criticism was well stated; it is not our intention to reply to any specific publication or to any specific critic. Our view is that all valid questions should be answered. However, some questions may not be relevant, or there may be no information presently available for an answer. In the latter case, we believe that a distinction should be made between data that are unavailable and data that have been found to be contradictory.

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