Mar 25, 2019
What was behind the mysterious
increase in lung cancer deaths at the turn of the 20th century? The
first of a three-parter investigating the cigarette-smoking link
and causality, this episode looks at that early debate, which
largely focused on environmental pollution. Along the way, we’re
going to talk about toxic vapors -- and not Miasma theory, but the
actual literal Great Smog of London in 1952 that killed over 10,000
people -- as well as the birth of the case-control study, Nazi
attempts at tobacco control programs, and the rather prosaic
beginnings of a debate that rages to this day. Plus a new
#AdamAnswers about the medical cause of Game of Thrones greyscale
featuring Dr. Jules Lipoff!
M. L., Davis, D. L. & Fletcher, T. A retrospective assessment
of mortality from the London smog episode of 1952: the role of
influenza and pollution. Environ Health Persp 112, 6–8
- Brunekreef B, Air Pollution and Life
Expectancy: Is There a Relation? Occupational and Environmental
Medicine, Vol. 54, No. 11 (Nov., 1997), pp. 781-784.
Voeux HC, Smoke and Fog, The Lancet, 1679-1680 (1904).
WPD, Mortality in the London Fog Incident, 1952. The Lancet,
- Heirdorn KC, The Weather Doctor's Weather
Almanac: The Infamous London Smog of 1952, 2012.
- HOFFMAN, F. L. CANCER AND SMOKING HABITS. Ann
Surg 93, 50–67 (1931).
- Morabia, A. Quality, originality, and
significance of the 1939 “Tobacco consumption and lung carcinoma”
article by Mueller, including translation of a section of the
paper. Prev Med 55, 171–177 (2012).
- Ochsner, A. My first recognition of the
relationship of smoking and lung cancer. Prev Med 2, 611–614
- Ochsner, A. & bakey. Primary pulmonary
malignancy: treatment by total pneumonectomy; analysis of 79
collected cases and presentation of 7 personal cases. Ochsner J 1,
- Parascandola, M. Two approaches to etiology:
the debate over smoking and lung cancer in the 1950s. Endeavour 28,
- Press, D. J. & Pharoah, P. Risk Factors for
Breast Cancer. Epidemiology 21, 566–572 (2010).
- Proctor, R. Angel H Roffo: the forgotten father
of experimental tobacco carcinogenesis. B World Health Organ 84,
- Proctor, R. N. The anti-tobacco campaign of the
Nazis: a little known aspect of public health in Germany, 1933–45.
Bmj 313, 1450 (1996).
- Proctor, R. On playing the Nazi card. Tob
Control 17, 289–290 (2008).
- Winkelstein, W. Vignettes of the History of
Epidemiology: Three Firsts by Janet Elizabeth Lane-Claypon. Am J
Epidemiol 160, 97–101 (2004).
- Proctor R, The history of the discovery of the
cigarette–lung cancer link: evidentiary traditions, corporate
denial, global toll. Tobacco Control. 21:2 (2013).