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Study links smoking & cervical cancer.

A study by Dr. Carolyn Runowicz at the Montefiore Medical Center in New York of 60 women who had advanced cervical cancer showed 85% were smokers and the rest had significant exposure to passive smoking, generally through spouses who smoked.

Abnormal Pap tests were also clearly shown as being related to smoking. Runcowicz counsels women with abnormal Pap tests to stop smoking in the hopes of slowing the progression of dysplasia before it becomes cancer.

Scientists are not sure how smoking increases a woman's risk. Some experts theorize that nicotine may have a predilection for the type of cells, squamous, that cover both the lungs and the cervix. Others feel that smoking may be a mild suppressant of immune function, allowing human papilloma virus infections to fester. Such infections are known to promote abnormal Pap tests.

--From an article by Elisabeth Rosenthal in the New York Times; printed in the Ann Arbor News, Nov. 25, 1991.
COPYRIGHT 1991 Association of Labor Assistants & Childbirth Educators
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1991, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Special Delivery
Date:Sep 22, 1991
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