A new study involving men ages 66-97 shows that smokers who make it to age 70 still lose an average of four years of life, researchers in Britain say.
Researchers Dr. Jonathan Emberson and Dr. Robert Clarke said they examined information on 7,000 older men — mean age 77 — from 1997-2012. They found that 5,000 of the 7,000 men died, but that deaths in current smokers were about 50 percent higher than in those who never smoked due primarily to vascular disease, cancer and respiratory diseases.
Hazard ratios for overall mortality and various causes of death in relation to smoking habits were determined after considering other factors such as age, employment and health concerns.
“Despite recent declines in the numbers of people smoking and tar yields of cigarettes, smoking remains the leading preventable cause of death in Europe,” Emberson said in a press release.
He added: “Previous