(HealthDay News) — Nonsmokers account for a growing percentage of aggressive lung cancer cases in the United States and the United Kingdom, new research finds. Results of the studies were scheduled for presentation at the 16th World Conference on Lung Cancer hosted by the International Association of the Study of Lung Cancer and held from September 6–9 in Denver.
In one study, researchers found that over seven years the proportion of U.K. never-smokers with non-small-cell lung cancer increased from 13 to 28%. The findings were based on medical records for 2,170 U.K. patients who underwent surgery for lung cancer between 2008–2014.
In another study, a team led by Lorraine Pelosof, MD, PhD, of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, analyzed data on 12,103 lung cancer patients at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Parkland Hospital in Dallas, and Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN. Pelosof and colleagues compared data compiled from 1990–1995 and from 2011–2013.
“In 1990–1995, 9% of non-small-cell patients were never-smokers. By 2011–2013, nearly 15% were,” Pelosof told HealthDay. In comparison, nonsmokers with small-cell lung cancers – a less common form of disease – increased only slightly, from 1.7 to 2.5% in the later period.