A study conducted by researchers with the International Collaboration of Epidemiological Studies of Cervical Cancer has found that women who smoke have a 60% higher risk of developing cervical cancer than women who never did.
The study, which is published in the International Journal of Cancer, evaluated data on 23,017 women who participated in 23 previous studies on the effects of smoking on the risk of developing cervical cancer.
While the researchers found the risk increases with the number of cigarettes smoked per day and the age at which a woman begins smoking, no correlation was found between smoking duration and the development of cervical cancer.
In 8 of the 23 studies analyzed, there was data on cervical infection with human papilloma virus (HPV). The virus has been linked to most cases of cervical cancer. In the 8 studies considered, women who tested positive for HPV, had a risk of cervical cancer almost 200% higher than women who were HPV-negative.
According to the study authors, these results confirm that smoking is a risk factor for cervical cancer.