Background: There is a broad consensus among health policy-makers that smoking has a significant impact on both heath system and society. The purpose of this study was to estimate the economic burden of major cancer deaths caused by smoking in Iran in 2012.
Methods: Number of major cancer deaths due to smoking by sex and age groups in 2012 was obtained from GLOBCAN database. The life expectancy and retirement age were used to estimate years of potential life lost (YPLL) and cost of productive lost attributable to smoking, respectively. Data on prevalence of smoking, relative risk of smoking, life expectancy table, annual wage and employment rate were extracted from the various resources such as previous studies, WHO database and Iranian statistic centers. The data analysis was conducted by Excel software.
Results: Smoking was responsible for 4,623 cancer deaths, 80808 YPLL and $US 83,019,583 cost of productivity lost. Lung cancer accounts for largest proportion of total cancer deaths, YPLL and cost of productivity lost attributable to smoking. Males account for 86.6% of cancer deaths, 82.6% of YPLL and 85.3% of cost of productivity lost caused by smoking.
Conclusions: Smoking places a high economic burden on health system and society as a whole. In addition, if no one had been smokers in Iran, approximately two out of ten cancer deaths could be prevented.