31 May 2024 .Brussels , Belgium

Smoking and bladder cancer – World No Tobacco Day

May 31, 2024 is World No Tabacco Day. Tobacco use ranks among the world’s leading causes of death. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that more than 8 million deaths per year are attributed to tobacco use, including more than 1.2 million deaths among nonsmokers exposed to secondhand smoke.

Around the world, over 610,000 people are diagnosed with bladder cancer, 1.9 million people find themselves living with this condition and it is the 13th cause of death from cancer globally.

Tobacco smoking and bladder cancer

The World Bladder Cancer Patient Coalition fully supports the World No Tobacco Day and puts the emphasis on raising awareness on the harmful effects of tobacco use on health, and specifically on cancer incidence and related deaths.

More than 7,000 different chemicals are in tobacco and tobacco smoke — more than 70 of them are known to cause cancer. Tobacco smoking has been recognised as the strongest risk factor for bladder cancer and other types of cancers:

  • It is estimated that smoking causes about 50%of all bladder cancers.
  • Persons who smoke may be up to 4 times more likely to develop bladder cancer than non-smokers.

«Although I knew that smoking is a risk factor for lung cancer,I was not aware that exposure to chemicals and tobacco smoking increases the risk of developing bladder cancer”

Testimonial from a patient living and working with bladder cancer,

Since tobacco is a leading cause of cancer mortality, a strong implementation of effective tobacco control measures is critical to reducing the global cancer burden.

The White Paper on Bladder Cancer published by the European Association of Urology together with WBCPC, highlights policy opportunities for tobacco control measures and tackling bladder cancer incidence in the European Union.

WHO World No Tobacco Day Campaign – Get involved

With this year’s theme, “Youth step in and speak out #TobaccoExposed,” World No Tobacco Day 2024 spotlights the significant role of young people in advocating for protective measures against exploitative tobacco marketing. The tobacco industry persistently targets youth to secure a new generation of consumers, with statistics showing that an estimated 37 million adolescents aged 13–15 worldwide consume tobacco products.

More information and helpful resources about World No Tobacco Day here.

We invite you to visit our Bladder Cancer information pages to know more about bladder cancer risk factors.


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