Population attributable fraction

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The population attributable fraction (PAF) is a measure of the proportion of cases caused by a particular cause. (Or, to put it another way, as statisticians are wont to do, the proportion of cases that would not have occurred if there had been no exposure.)[1]

For example, in 1950 the population attributable factor for lung cancer was calculated to be 83% - meaning that 83% of lung cancer cases were caused by smoking, and would not have occurred if the patients had not smoked.