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Smoking link to breast cancer refuted

BMJ 1996; 313 doi: (Published 16 November 1996) Cite this as: BMJ 1996;313:1226

A British cancer expert has challenged claims by United States researchers that some women who smoke could be quadrupling their chances of developing breast cancer.

Professor Richard Peto, codirector of the Imperial Cancer Research Fund's Cancer Studies Unit in Oxford, said that the latest links with smoking ran contrary to all previous evidence and that the results of the studies should never have hit the headlines.

In the report in the Journal of the American Medical Association (1996;276:1494-501) the researchers claim that smoking may be an important risk factor for breast cancer among postmenopausal women …

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