Background and objective: Certain diseases related to smoking have recently decreased in Spanish adults. This study estimated the burden of smoking-attributable mortality in Spain currently and in previous years.
Population and method: Smoking prevalence and mortality in Spain, and relative risks for death from the Cancer Prevention Study II were used to estimate tobacco-attributable mortality in the Spanish population aged 35 years and over.
Results: In 2001, 54,233 deaths were attributable to tobacco use (49,366 in men and 4,867 in women). This represents a global reduction in comparison with the 55,613 deaths attributed to tobacco in 1998 (51,431 in men and 4,182 in women). One out of four current attributable deaths were untimely deaths occurred before age 65 years.
Conclusions: A reduction in the number of smoking-attributable deaths is observed for the first time in Spain, as a result of a clear reduction among men. However, the overall decrease of smoking-related deaths is too small, and the burden of smoking-attributable mortality in Spain remains too high.