Smoking, booze link to cancer a mystery to some Kiwis

Some New Zealanders who drink and smoke a lot do not realise they are increasing their chance of getting cancer, a global survey has found.

The survey - Cancer Related Beliefs and Behaviour - interviewed more than 45,000 people in 39 countries.

The survey was completed last year on behalf of the International Union Against Cancer (UICC).

As part of the survey, 2130 people from Australia and New Zealand were interviewed.

Key results showed that most people who drunk alcohol and smoked frequently, did not realise this increased their risk of getting cancer, UICC president Professor David Hill said.

In Australia and New Zealand more than 40 percent of people did not believe alcohol increased their risk of cancer, he said.

This was a "real concern" as the consumption of alcohol and tobacco multiplied the risk of certain cancers, he said.

In Australia and New Zealand nearly 60 percent of people had had a cancer screening test, but this was lower in other countries, Prof Hill said.

The UICC would be using the data to ensure people had more accurate knowledge of cancer.


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