Smokers At Risk Of Melanoma-Associated Death


According to a study, smoking is linked with an increased risk of melanoma-associated death. This was seen in patients with clinical stage I and II melanoma. The study was published in February in JAMA Network Open.

Katherine M. Jackson, M.D., from the Saint John’s Cancer Institute at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, California, along with her colleagues examined the association. She did a posthoc analysis of data from randomized multinational first- and second-center multicenter selective lymphadenectomy trials.

The participants were 18 to 75 years old. They all had clinical stages I and II melanoma with a Breslow thickness of 1.00 mm or greater or Clark levels IV and V. Moreover, the data for 6,279 patients was included. Other than that, 17.2% were current, 27.0% were former, and 55.9% were never-smokers, respectively.

In conclusion, based on the multivariable analysis, the researchers found that current smoking was associated with a greater risk for melanoma-associated death. However, former smokers had no link.

The patients with sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLNB)-negative melanoma had the highest increased risk of melanoma-associated death from smoking. In addition, SLNB-positive melanoma patients, along with nodal observation, were also seen to be at an increased risk. For patients who were SLNB-negative. Smoking at least twenty cigarettes per day doubles the risk of death because of melanoma.

The authors wrote,

Because smoking could be considered a risk factor for disease progression, increased vigilance in the management of patients who smoke may be warranted,


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