Smoking Is The Primary Cause Of Preventable Diseases

1978 Words Oct 1st, 2014 8 Pages
Smoking is the primary cause of preventable diseases and premature mortality globally (Samet, 2013). It causes a series of health conditions, ranging from cancers in the respiratory tract and cardiovascular diseases to psychiatric disorders (Kuper, Adami & Boffetta, 2002). Smoking is found to be disproportionately more prevalent among the disadvantaged individuals in society (Marmot & Wilkinson, 2006).

A tobacco-caused disease epidemic emerged in the twentieth century and persists till today, during which the incidence of lung cancer, of which 90% is caused by smoking, rose drastically (Witschi, 2001). Lung cancer is a medical condition caused by fast-growing cells that form malignant tumors in the lungs, which invade and destroy neighbouring cells (American Cancer Society (ACS), 2014). Lung cancer can be caused by inherent genetic characteristics, however it is most commonly a result of smoking (ACS, 2014). As a result, the large inequality in smoking is reflected in health inequalities of lung cancer (Soerjomataram, et al., 2010). Therefore, social and economic factors that cause smoking inequality are important when understanding this health inequality (ACS, 2014). Studies show an inverse association between socioeconomic status (SES) and lung cancer risk, incidence and mortality (Soerjomataram, et al., 2010). Individuals in the lower SES have lower economic, social and work status (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 2014). Lowest SES individuals…
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