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WHO tables

On this page we present some tables from the WHO report that was published in 1998, after a long time of hesitation. These tables very clearly show why they hesitated that long before publishing it...

The tables show:

More info:


Explanation of the tables and graphs

  • OR (Odds Ratio) = RR (Relative Risk)
  • RR<1: Positive influence
  • RR=1: No effect
  • RR>1: Some effect, doubtful statistical significance
  • RR>2: Statistical significant effect
  • Lowest and highest values (CI: Confidence Interval) show the upper and lower 95% limits for the real value. When an RR-value of 1 is included in this range, the measured effect lacks any statistical significance.

Table 2. Odds ratios of lung cancer from exposure to environmental tobacco smoke during childhood

All subjects*
Women*
Case subjects Control subjects OR 95% CI P for trend† Case subjects Control subjects OR 95% CI P for trend†
Ever exposed

No

252 496 1.00 Referent 187 295 1.00 Referent

Yes

389 1021 0.78 0.64–0.96 314 700 0.77 0.61–0.98

Missing values

9  25 8 16

No. of smokers in household



None

252 496 1.00 Referent 187 295 1.00 Referent

1

305 750 0.80 0.64–0.99 243 528 0.76 0.59–0.98

2

52 191 0.63 0.44–0.90 43 117 0.69 0.46–1.04

>=3

32 80 1.05 0.65–1.70 .24 28 55 1.13 0.67–1.91 .54

Missing values

9 25  8 16
Cumulative exposure
(weighted smoker-years)


0

252 496 1.00 Referent 187 295 1.00 Referent

0.1–14.0

248 582 0.83 0.66–1.04 193 394 0.78 0.60–1.02

14.1–18.0

104 332 0.68 0.51–0.92 93 239 0.73 0.53–1.02

>=18.1

37 107 0.80 0.51–1.24 .02 28 67 0.90 0.54–1.50 .10

Missing values

9 25 8 16

* OR 4 odds ratio adjusted for age and sex–center interaction; CI 4 confidence interval.
† Two-tailed P value of test for linear trend.

Blue is no statistical significant effect Green is positive effect Red statistical significant effect


Number of smokers in household
1= 1 smoker, 2= 2 smokers, 3= 3 or more


Duration of exposure in weighted years
1= 0.1 to 14, 2= 14.1 to 18, 3= Over 18

 

The WHO numbers are more likely to indicate a POSITIVE effect on childhood exposure to SHS! (RR<1). Reason: immune system training? Other studies also give an indication in this direction.

 


Table 3. Odds ratios of lung cancer from exposure to environment tobacco smoke from the spouse

  All subjects*
Women*
 

Case subjects

Control subjects

OR 95% CI

P for trend†

Case subjects

Control subjects

OR 95% CI P for trend†
Ever exposed

No 305 838 1.00 Referent   187 376 1.00 Referent  
Yes 344 700 1.16 0.93–1.44   321 632 1.11 0.88–1.39  
Missing values 1 4       1 3      

Duration of exposure (in years)

 Unexposed 305 838 1.00 Referent   187 376 1.00 Referent  
 1–34 223 498 1.05 0.83–1.33   202 439 0.99 0.77–1.27  
 35–42 65 103 0.63 0.12–2.37   64 98 1.57 1.06–2.31  
 ≥43 38 80 1.07 0.68–1.68 .10 37 76 1.05 0.66–1.68 .19
 Missing values 19 23       19 22      
Duration of exposure (hours/day ื years)

 Unexposed 297 778 1.00 Referent   181 327 1.00 Referent  
 1–135 165 396 0.90 0.70–1.16   146 348 0.80 0.61–1.06  
 136–223 44 81 1.20 0.78–1.85   42 75 1.12 0.72–1.74  
 224 41 53 1.80 1.12–2.90 .02 41 52 1.70 1.05–2.75  .03
 Missing values 103 234       99 209      
Average exposure (cigarettes/day)

 Unexposed 297 778 1.00 Referent   181 327 1.00 Referent  
 0.1–10.0 206 411 1.10 0.86–1.40   184 360 1.00 0.77–1.31  
 10.1–18.0 25 83 0.58 0.35–0.90   25 79 0.57 0.34–0.93  
 18.1 35 55 1.37 0.85–2.20 .88 35 52 1.34 0.83–2.17 .97
 Missing values 87 215       84 193      
Cumulative exposure (pack-years)

 Unexposed 297  778 1.00 Referent   181 327 1.00 Referent  
 0.1–13.0 188 411 1.00 0.78–1.28   167 358 0.91 0.70–1.19  
 13.1–23.0 36 83 0.89 0.57–1.39   35 78 0.83 0.52–1.30  
 23.1 42 55 1.64 1.04–2.59 .09 42 55 1.54 0.97–2.44 .15
 Missing values 87 215       84 193      

*OR = odds ratio adjusted for age and sex–center interaction; CI = confidence interval.

†Two-tailed P value of test for linear trend.

Blue is no statistical significant effect Green is positive effect Red statistical significant effect

Table 4. Odds ratios of lung cancer from exposure to environmental tobacco smoke at the workplace

All subjects*
Women*
Case subjects Control subjects OR  95% CI P for trend†  Case subjects Control subjects OR 95% CI P for trend†
Ever exposed

No

276 687 1.00 Referent 240 535 1.00 Referent

Yes

374 855 1.17 0.9–1.45 269 476 1.19 0.94–1.51

Missing values

0 0 0 0
Duration of exposure (in years)

Unexposed

276 687 1.00 Referent 240 535 1.00 Referent

1–29

278 634 1.15 0.91–1.44 211 399 1.14 0.89-1.47

30–38

55 129 1.26 0.85-1.85 37 47 1.50 0.93-2.43

>=39

39 91 1.19 0.76-1.86 .21 20 29 1.24 0.67-2.28 .19

Missing values

2 1 1 1
Duration of exposure
(level‡ ื hours/day ื years)


Unexposed

276 687 1.00 Referent 240 535 1.00 Referent

0.1–46.1

196 525 0.97 0.76–1.25 148 316 1.03 0.78–1.36

46.2–88.9

47 105 1.41 0.93–2.12 26 54 1.08 0.65–1.81

>=89.0

48 71 2.07 1.33–3.21 .01 30 33 1.87 1.10–3.20 .03

Missing values

83 154 65 73

     
* OR = odds ratio adjusted for age and sex–center interaction; CI = confidence interval.
† Two-tailed P value of test for linear trend.

Blue is no statistical significant effect Green is positive effect Red statistical significant effect


Exposure in years

Same level x hours/day x years

Conclusion: Only in the worst case a weak statistical relation can be shown. In all other cases there even can be a positive effect!

Sample Size

Like in the results of the non-smoking wives studies, there's a strong indication that higher sample sizes show lower RR's:


Regression Analysis

The higher RR's are found in the small samples. Higher samples sizes are closer to the population size. The WHO argument that their sample size had been too small doesn't look to be true. This analysis seems to show that they would have found even lower risks, even less proof of a relation between SHS and lung cancer!

 


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