Asbestos cancer and smoking
Asbestos has been classified as a known human “carcinogen”–that is, a substance that causes cancer–by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the EPA, and the International Agency for Research on Cancer.
Smoking has also been deemed carcinogenic, that is cancer-causing, to human beings. When the two are combined however, smokers who are also exposed to asbestos have a risk of developing lung cancer that is greater than the individual risks from asbestos and smoking added together.
Many studies have shown that the combination of smoking and asbestos exposure is particularly hazardous. Therefore, people who were exposed to asbestos on the job at any time during their life or who suspect they may have been exposed should not smoke.