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Tanner NT, Thomas NA, Ward R, et al. Association of Cigarette Type With Lung Cancer Incidence and Mortality: Secondary Analysis of the National Lung Screening Trial. JAMA Intern Med. 2019;179(12):1710–1712. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2019.3487
In response to increasing evidence implicating cigarette smoking as a cause of lung cancer in the 1950s, tobacco manufacturers introduced filtered and “lower-tar” cigarettes to allay consumer concerns, knowing they did not actually reduce health risks. Puncturing ventilation holes of varying sizes and numbers into the filter to dilute inhaled smoke became the optimum way to reduce tar yield.1
Despite these changes, smoking remains responsible for 80% to 90% of lung cancer diagnoses and 5-year survival is 18%, highlighting the importance of prevention.2 Lung cancer screening with low-dose computed tomography has been shown to improve mortality, and tobacco treatment is a required component of effective screening. We investigated the association of filter status, tar level, and menthol flavor with lung cancer outcomes in the National Lung Screening Trial.
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