Study objective: To assess the extent to which the
relationship between smoking and lung function in adults varies by
gender and race/ethnicity.
Design: A random-effects
metaregression analysis to synthesize results from common
cross-sectional regression models fit to participants in each of 10
gender-race strata in each of eight large population-based
observational studies or clinical trials.
Source data collected as part of the most recently completed
examination cycle for each of the participating studies.
Participants: Participants ranged in age from 30 to 85
years, although the age, race, gender, and general health
characteristics of each of the populations varied greatly.
Interventions: Most of the studies were observational in
nature, although some did involve lifestyle interventions. All
treatment assignments were ignored in the analysis.
Measurements and results: All studies measured lung
function using standardized methods with centrally trained and
certified technicians. Study findings confirm statistically
significant, dose-related smoking effects in all race-gender groups
studied. Significant gender differences in the effects of cigarette
smoking were seen only for blacks; black men who smoked had greater
smoking-related declines in FEV1 than did black women. This
effect was present in only one of two smoking models, however.
Significant racial differences in the effects of smoking were seen only
for men, with Asian/Pacific Islanders having smaller smoking-related
declines than white men in both models.
In summary, this analysis generally failed to support the hypothesis of
widespread differences in the effects of cigarette smoking on lung
function between gender or racial subgroups.