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Original Article
Metabolic Risk/Epidemiology
Dose-Dependent Effect of Smoking on Risk of Diabetes Remains after Smoking Cessation: A Nationwide Population-Based Cohort Study in Korea
Se Eun Park, Mi Hae Seo, Jung-Hwan Cho, Hyemi Kwon, Yang-Hyun Kim, Kyung-Do Han, Jin-Hyung Jung, Yong-Gyu Park, Eun-Jung Rhee, Won-Young Lee
Diabetes Metab J. 2021;45(4):539-546.   Published online March 4, 2021
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4093/dmj.2020.0061
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  • 12 Crossref
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Background
This study aimed to evaluate the dose-dependent effects of smoking on risk of diabetes among those quitting smoking.
Methods
We analyzed clinical data from a total of 5,198,792 individuals age 20 years or older who received health care check-up arranged by the national insurance program of Korea between 2009 and 2016 using the Korean National Health Insurance Service database. Cumulative smoking was estimated by pack-years. Smokers were classified into four categories according to the amount of smoking: light smokers (0.025 to 5 smoking pack-years), medium smokers (5 to 14 smoking pack-years), heavy smokers (14 to 26 smoking pack-years), and extreme smokers (more than 26 smoking pack-years).
Results
During the study period, 164,335 individuals (3.2% of the total population) developed diabetes. Compared to sustained smokers, the risk of diabetes was significantly reduced in both quitters (hazard ratio [HR], 0.858; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.838 to 0.878) and nonsmokers (HR, 0.616; 95% CI, 0.606 to 0.625) after adjustment for multiple risk factors. The risk of diabetes gradually increased with amount of smoking in both quitters and current smokers. The risk of diabetes in heavy (HR, 1.119; 95% CI, 1.057 to 1.185) and extreme smokers (HR, 1.348; 95% CI, 1.275 to 1.425) among quitters was much higher compared to light smokers among current smokers.
Conclusion
Smoking cessation was effective in reducing the risk of diabetes regardless of weight change. However, there was a potential dose-dependent association between smoking amount and the development of diabetes. Diabetes risk still remained in heavy and extreme smokers even after smoking cessation.

Citations

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Diabetes Metab J : Diabetes & Metabolism Journal