Letters Section Editor: Robert M. Golub, MD, Senior Editor.
To the Editor: I have 2 concerns with the study on women's susceptibility to tobacco carcinogens and survival after diagnosis of lung cancer by the International Early Lung Cancer Action Program (I-ELCAP) investigators.1 First, the authors report that their study demonstrates that at the same level of smoking exposure, women are more likely than men to develop lung cancer. However, the investigators did not observe people developing lung cancer; they observed how many people had lung cancer at the time of an initial computed tomographic (CT) screening examination. The authors observe prevalence (how many people have lung cancer at any one time) and draw a conclusion about incidence (how frequently people develop lung cancer over a period of time).
Bach PB. Survival in Women After Diagnosis of Lung Cancer. JAMA. 2007;297(2):153-154. doi:10.1001/jama.297.2.153-b