Introduction In the United States, prostate cancer mortality rates have declined in recent decades. Cigarette smoking, a risk factor for prostate cancer death, has also declined. It is unknown whether declines in smoking prevalence produced detectable declines in prostate cancer mortality. We examined state prostate cancer mortality rates in relation to changes in cigarette smoking. Methods We studied men aged 35 years or older from California, Kentucky, Maryland, and Utah. Data on state smoking prevalence were obtained from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System. Mortality rates for prostate cancer and external causes (control condition) were obtained from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Wide-Ranging Online Data for Epidemiologic Research. The average annual percentage change from 1999 through 2010 was estimated using joinpoint analysis. Results From 1999 through 2010, smoking in California declined by 3.5% per year (-4.4% to -2.5%), and prostate cancer mortality rates declined by 2.5% per year (-2.9% to -2.2%). In Kentucky, smoking declined by 3.0% per year (-4.0% to -1.9%) and prostate cancer mortality rates declined by 3.5% per year (-4.3% to -2.7%). In Maryland, smoking declined by 3.0% per year (-7.0% to 1.2%), and prostate cancer mortality rates declined by 3.5% per year (-4.1% to -3.0%).In Utah, smoking declined by 3.5% per year (-5.6% to -1.3%) and prostate cancer mortality rates declined by 2.1% per year (-3.8% to -0.4%). No corresponding patterns were observed for external causes of death. Conclusion Declines in prostate cancer mortality rates appear to parallel declines in smoking prevalence at the population level. This study suggests that declines in prostate cancer mortality rates may be a beneficial effect of reduced smoking in the population.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Health Policy