Smokeless and dual tobacco use among males surviving childhood cancer: a report from the Childhood Cancer Survivor Study

Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2013 Jun;22(6):1025-9. doi: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-12-1302. Epub 2013 Apr 11.


Cancer survivors experience treatment-related complications that can be exacerbated by tobacco use. This study reports the prevalence of smokeless and dual tobacco use, compares these rates to the U.S. population, and examines tobacco risk factors among males surviving childhood cancer. Data from the Childhood Cancer Survivor Study (CCSS) 2007 survey were used (N = 3378). Standardized incidence ratios (SIR) were obtained by comparing CCSS data with the National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Logistic regression was used to evaluate associations between risk factors and tobacco use. Among male survivors, 8.3% and 2.3% were current smokeless tobacco and dual tobacco users, respectively. Survivors were less likely than population males to report smokeless tobacco [SIR = 0.64; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.57-0.72) or dual tobacco (SIR = 0.37; CI, 0.29-0.46) use; however, non-White survivors aged 35 to 49 years were more likely to use smokeless tobacco (SIR = 2.32; CI, 1.27-3.90). Smokeless tobacco use was associated (P < 0.05) with younger age at diagnosis, lower education, being married or divorced/separated, and not living in the Northeastern United State, whereas history of cardiovascular- and/or pulmonary-toxic treatment was protective. Dual tobacco use was associated with younger age at diagnosis, lower education, divorce/separation, and high psychologic distress. Having active heart or circulatory conditions was protective. Although smokeless tobacco/dual tobacco use is generally low among childhood cancer survivors, these findings suggest that tobacco use screening should be expanded to include smokeless tobacco use, and that smokeless tobacco-specific education and cessation interventions should be provided to users. Screening and intervening for smokeless tobacco/dual tobacco use in childhood cancer survivors will reduce tobacco-related morbidity and mortality.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cohort Studies
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms / mortality*
  • Neoplasms / psychology
  • Neoplasms / therapy
  • Prognosis
  • Risk Factors
  • Survival Rate
  • Survivors / psychology*
  • Tobacco Use / adverse effects*
  • Tobacco Use Disorder / epidemiology*
  • Tobacco Use Disorder / etiology
  • Tobacco, Smokeless / adverse effects*
  • Young Adult