Health and Quitting Articles



ADDITIVES IN CIGARETTES

Source: Richmond (VA) Times-Dispatch
Date: December 14, 2008
Author: Times-Dispatch Staff Reports

Here’s an ABC of some additives that go into cigarettes — not all at one time — compiled from a list of 599 additives disclosed by tobacco-makers to the U.S. Health and Human Services Department:

• Acetanisole Found in a glandular secretion of beavers that smells sweet and can taste like vanilla or cherry.

• Ammonia Used in cleaning fluid. Makes eyes sting and can cause dermatitis.

• Beet juice Additives in cigarettes full article.

PANEL CALLS FOR VACCINE FOR ADULT SMOKERS

Source: AP
Date: October 22, 2008
Author: Associated Press, kpic4news@kpic.com

For the first time, an influential government panel is recommending a vaccination specifically for smokers.

The panel decided Wednesday that adult smokers under 65 should get pneumococcal vaccine. The shot - already recommended for anyone 65 or older - protects against bacteria that cause pneumonia, meningitis and other illnesses.

Federal officials usually adopt recommendations made by the panel, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices. The vote means more than 31 million adult smokers probably will soon be called on to get the shot.

Studies have shown that smokers are about four times more likely than nonsmokers to suffer pneumococcal disease.

Full article no longer available.

NICOTINE MAY SPUR BREAST CANCER'S SPREAD

Source: HealthDay [HealthScout]
Date: October 16, 2008
Author: Amanda Gardner HealthDay Reporter

Nicotine may help push breast cancer cells from the original tumor to other parts of the body, contributing to the metastasis that so often kills patients.

Besides serving as yet another warning against smoking, the finding may also point to new targets for cancer drugs. However, the study's lead author stressed it is still too early to pinpoint the exact role nicotine may play in breast cancer's spread.

"I don't know what the potential is," said Dr. Chang Yan Chen, of the department of radiation oncology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School, Boston.

"This adds to the whole body of literature on how things that we ingest could potentially be harmful in terms of causing breast cancer or making existing breast cancer worse," added Dr. Julian Kim, a breast cancer surgeon and chief of oncologic surgery at University Hospitals Case Medical Center in Cleveland. Breast cancer and smoking full article.

STUDY: EVEN OCCASIONAL SMOKING CAN IMPAIR ARTERIES

Source: physorg.com
Date: October 7, 2008
Author: Source: University Of Georgia

Even occasional cigarette smoking can impair the functioning of your arteries, according to a new University of Georgia study that used ultrasound to measure how the arteries of young, healthy adults respond to changes in blood flow.

"Most people know that if they have a cigarette or two over the weekend that it's not good for their arteries," said study co-author Kevin McCully, a professor of kinesiology in the UGA College of Education, "but what they may not be aware of—and what our study shows—is that the decrease in function persists into the next week, if not longer."

Previous studies have shown reductions in the arterial health of people who smoke regularly, McCully said, but what's surprising about his finding is that the study subjects were occasional smokers (less than a pack a week) who had not smoked for at least two days before their ultrasound. Occasional smoking health risks full article.

SMOKING RISKIER TO WOMEN'S HEARTS THAN MEN'S

Source: AP
Date: September 2, 2008
Author: MARIA CHENG

Women typically get heart disease much later than men, but not if they smoke, researchers said Tuesday.

In fact, women who smoke have heart attacks nearly 14 years earlier than women who don't smoke, Norwegian doctors reported in a study presented to the European Society of Cardiology. For men, the gap is not so dramatic; male smokers have heart attacks about six years earlier than men who don't smoke.

"This is not a minor difference," said Dr. Silvia Priori, a cardiologist at the Scientific Institute in Pavia, Italy. "Women need to realize they are losing much more than men when they smoke," she said. Priori was not connected to the research.

Dr. Morten Grundtvig and colleagues from the Innlandet Hospital Trust in Lillehammer, Norway, based their study on data from 1,784 patients admitted for a first heart attack at a hospital in Lillehammer.

Their study found that the men on average had their first heart attack at age 72 if they didn't smoke, and at 64 if they did.

Women in the study had their first heart attack at age 81 if they didn't smoke, and at age 66 if they did.

Full article no longer available.

MOM'S SMOKING DURING PREGNANCY UPS PREEMIE'S SIDS RISK

Source: HealthDay [HealthScout]
Date: August 29, 2008

Babies born prematurely to women who smoked during their pregnancy may be at higher risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) than premature infants born to nonsmoking moms, new research suggests.

The Canadian study is the first to compare the breathing reflexes of "preemies" born to smokers versus nonsmokers. The researchers found that these tiny babies were more likely to have impaired recovery from pauses in breathing if their mother had smoked during her pregnancy.

"Our study shows that preterm infants make incomplete and/or delayed recovery from interruptions in breathing," study author and neonatologist Dr. Shabih Hasan, a professor of pediatrics at the University of Calgary, said in an American Thoracic Society news release. "This has clear implications for their risk of SIDS."

The study, published in the first issue for September of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, involved 22 infants born spontaneously between 28 and 32 weeks of gestation. Smoking and SIDS full article.

STROKE RISK IN WOMEN SMOKERS GOES UP BY EACH CIGARETTE

Source: HealthDay [HealthScout]
Date: August 14, 2008

Author: Ed Edelson, HealthDay Reporter

The risk of stroke for a young woman smoker is directly related to the number of cigarettes she smokes, a new study finds.

While smoking has been clearly established as increasing the risk of stroke, "there is not a lot of data out there on the actual dose response," said Dr. John Cole, the study's corresponding author and an assistant professor of neurology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore.

Cole and his colleagues interviewed 466 women who had had a stroke, and also 604 women who hadn't. All were between the ages of 15 and 49, and were either smokers, non-smokers or former smokers.

Any smoking at all doubles the risk of stroke, the study found. The risk was 2.2 times greater for women smoking one to 10 cigarettes a day . . .

The study findings are published in the Aug. 15 issue of the journal Stroke.

Full article no longer available.

SKIN DEEP - WANT A FACE-LIFT? FIRST, BETTER STOP SMOKING

Source: New York Times
Date: August 14, 2008
Author: ABBY ELLIN

The growing number of cosmetic-surgery patients are motivated to quit for other reasons: vanity, and the threat of not being able to get a coveted new face, stomach or pair of breasts. . . .

For the last 5 to 10 years, many plastic and cosmetic surgeons have refused to operate on smokers, especially those seeking a face-lift, tummy tuck, or breast-lift — procedures that require skin to be shifted.

“Nicotine causes the tiny blood vessels in the skin to clamp down or constrict, which reduces blood supply to the skin,” said Dr. Darshan Shah, a plastic surgeon in Bakersfield, Calif. Complications can include poor wound healing, increased risk of infection, longer-lasting bruises, and raised, red scars. . . .

Plastic and cosmetic surgeons recommend quitting a minimum of two weeks before and after procedures, though some require longer to be extra safe. (Smokers also run the risk of infection and respiratory complications during anesthesia). For instance, Dr. Jeffrey Rosenthal, the chief of plastic surgery at Bridgeport Hospital in Connecticut, mandates six weeks of smoke-free living before eyelid surgery or breast augmentation, and six months to a year before a tummy tuck.

They also take it upon themselves to devise smoking cessation plans, prescribe drugs like Wellbutrin or Chantix and recommend hypnotists or support groups. . . .

Then there’s the matter of the cosmetic surgeon’s reputation. It can’t help business if a cigarette-loving patient ends up looking like the Bride of Frankenstein. Surgery and smoking full article.

YALE STUDY SHOWS WHY CIGARETTE SMOKE MAKES FLU, OTHER VIRAL INFECTIONS WORSE

Source: EurekAlert
Date: July 24, 2008

A new study by researchers at Yale School of Medicine could explain why the cold and flu virus symptoms that are often mild and transient in non-smokers can seriously sicken smokers. Published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation, the study also identified the mechanism by which viruses and cigarette smoke interact to increase lung inflammation and damage. Smoking and flu full article.

CUTTING DOWN ON SMOKING REDUCES RISK OF SURGERY COMPLICATIONS

Source: San Antonio (TX) Express-News
Date: July 3, 2008
Author: Wendy Rigby KENS 5 Eyewitness News

Dr. David Wagner, a Mayo Clinic anesthesiologist, counsels patients about the benefits of quitting smoking before and after surgery.

"We recommend that our patients stop smoking as long as possible before the surgery, and then for at least a week after surgery," he said.

Cigarettes increase the level of carbon monoxide in your blood and decrease the level of oxygen. Decreased oxygen increases your chance of a heart attack.

Smoking can also slow sown surgical wound healing and even increase the risk of infection. Plus, smoking increases your risk of lung problems such as pneumonia.

Full article no longer available.

IS THE DAMAGE FROM SMOKING PERMANENT?

Source: TIME Magazine
Date: July 3, 2008
Author: Laura Blue

Tens of millions of Americans have quit smoking cigarettes. Thebenefits of quitting - no matter what your age - are prodigious. Risks of heart disease and stroke plummet. So does the risk of lung cancer, along with cancers of the mouth, throat, bladder, cervix and pancreas. But can the damage from smoking ever be completely undone? Norman Edelman, chief medical officer of the American Lung Association, explains.

Full article no longer available.

SMOKELESS TOBACCO PRODUCTS DO RAISE CANCER RISK
Subtitle: Snuff, chew shouldn't be viewed as a safe alternative to smoking, experts say

Source: HealthDay [HealthScout]
Date: July 2, 2008,
Author: editors@healthday.com

Smokeless tobacco products (STPs), which include products such as snuff and chew tobacco, do increase the user's risk of cancer --just not as much as smoking does.

So say researchers who examined worldwide patterns of STP use and the associated risk of cancer.

Reporting in the July issue of The Lancet Oncology, a team led by Dr. Paolo Boffeta, of the International Agency for Research on Cancer, in France, noted that STPs contain more than 30 carcinogens, including nitrosamines and metals.

Their analysis of studies from around the world found that STP users had an overall 80 percent increased risk of oral cancer and a 60 percent increased risk of esophageal cancer. They also had a similar increase in the risk of pancreatic cancer. European studies suggest no increased risk of lung cancer among STP users, but American studies suggest an 80 percent increased risk of lung cancer, the team said. Smokeless tobacco and cancer full article.

AS AMY WINEHOUSE SHOWS, SIGNS OF EMPHYSEMA CAN BEGIN EARLY
Subtitle: Younger adults often don't notice the damage that years of smoking can cause until later in life when lung capacity may be severely cut.

Source: Los Angeles Times
Date: June 30, 2008
Author: Jeannine Stein, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer

In fact, Winehouse is not an anomaly. Health experts say that young adult smokers are no strangers to mild emphysema, a shortness of breath caused by damage to the lung's small air sacs. Smoking can permanently deteriorate the lungs, irreversibly diminishing lung capacity -- and the damage starts young, even in teens who smoke five cigarettes a day, according to one 1996 study from the Harvard School of Public Health and the Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston of 10,000 youths who smoked.

But many smokers don't show symptoms for years, leading them to believe no damage is being done when, in fact, it is accruing all the time. "Teenagers and people in their 20s think they're invincible," says Dr. Norman H. Edelman, chief medical officer for the American Lung Assn. "They think they can wait until they're 35 to stop smoking and everything's going to be fine, but they can do permanent damage before that."

As well as emphysema, Samet adds, smoking can cause chronic bronchitis, lung inflammation characterized by irritation and scarring. "There are a lot of extraordinarily irritating substances in tobacco smoke. The lung has defense mechanisms that can clean out things that get in. But smokers dump so much toxic stuff in that the lungs can't keep up." Amy Winehouse and smoking full article.

MATERNAL SMOKING TIED TO OVERWEIGHT CHILDREN

Source: DoctorNDTV (in)
Date: June 25, 2008
Author: American Journal Of Clinical Nutrition

Maternal smoking in the first trimester of pregnancy may increase the risk of overweight in children later.

The prevalence of obesity is increasing worldwide, and the rising number of obese children and adolescents is of particular concern. Smoking is a predisposing factor for abdominal obesity, glucose intolerance and insulin resistance. Maternal smoking has been associated with preterm birth and low birth weight. On the other hand, the incidence of obesity is higher in children and adults born of smoking mothers. However, till date no study has examined whether smoking in the first trimester lead to childhood overweight. Smoking and childhood obesity full article.

LOW NICOTINE AND NICOTINE-FREE CIGARETTES NO LESS HARMFUL TO SMOKERS, RESEARCH FINDS

Source: British Medical Journal
Date: June 7, 2008
Author: Roger Dobson

Perceptions that low nicotine and nicotine-free cigarettes are less harmful than conventional cigarettes are not supported by research.

Smokers might have reduced exposure to some toxicants, but exposure to others is greater, say researchers in Toxicology.

Full article no longer available.

SMOKERS WITH ADVANCED COLON CANCER MAY FACE HIGHER ODDS OF DISEASE RECURRENCE

Source: ScienceDaily Magazine
Date: June 2, 2008
Author: Adapted From Materials Provided By Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Via EurekAlert, A Service Of AAAS., editor@sciencedaily.com

People with advanced colon cancer who have smoked cigarettes or used other tobacco products for many years may have an increased risk that their colon cancer will return, according to research by Dana-Farber Cancer Institute scientists to be presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), May 30-June 3, in Chicago.

Based on data from 965 patients treated for stage III colon cancer, investigators found the chances of recurrence or death up to 22 percent higher in patients with a 20 or more pack year history. Smoking and colon cancer full article.

FLAVONOIDS IN FRUITS, VEGETABLES AND TEAS MAY PROTECT SMOKERS FROM LUNG CANCER, UCLA RESEARCHERS REPORT

Source: Medical News TODAY(UK)
Date: June 1, 2008
Author: Source: Kim Irwin University Of California - Los Angeles

Tobacco smokers who eat three servings of fruits and vegetables per day and drink green or black tea may be protecting themselves from lung cancer, according to a first-of-its-kind study by UCLA cancer researchers.

UCLA researchers found that smokers who ingested high levels of natural chemicals called flavonoids in their diet had a lower risk of developing lung cancer, an important finding since more than 90 percent of lung cancers are caused by tobacco smoking.

The study was published this month in the journal CANCER.

"What we found was extremely interesting, that several types of flavonoids are associated with a reduced risk of lung cancer among smokers," said Dr. Zuo-Feng Zhang, a researcher at UCLA's Jonsson Cancer Center and a professor of public health and epidemiology. "The findings were especially interesting because tobacco smoking is the major risk factor for lung cancer." Smoking and lung cancer full article.

SMOKING AND QUITTING PROBLEMATIC WITH ARTHRITIS
Source: Reuters
Date: May 30, 2008
Author: Joene Hendry / SOURCE: Arthritis Research And Therapy, May 2008, 996-2006

Among people with rheumatoid arthritis, heavy smokers appear to have a greater loss of muscle mass than those who smoke fewer cigarettes or do not smoke, study findings suggest.

On the other hand, people with rheumatoid arthritis are prone to gain weight when they stop smoking, and this may negatively impact their quality of life, report Dr. Antonios Stavropoulos-Kalinoglou and colleagues.

"In any case, though, smoking is a bad habit for rheumatoid arthritis patients," said Stavropoulos-Kalinoglou of the Dudley Group of Hospitals NHS Trust, in West Midlands, UK.

Smokers with rheumatoid arthritis should couple smoking cessation with weight management and lifestyle counseling to counteract or minimize weight gain, he told Reuters Health. Smoking and arthritis full article.

RESEARCHERS PINPOINT HOW SMOKING CAUSES CANCER
Source: Science Daily Magazine
Date: May 13, 2008

Oregon Health & Science University Cancer Institute researchers have pinpointed the protein that can lead to genetic changes that cause lung cancer.

Researchers discovered that the production of a protein called FANCD2 is slowed when lung cells are exposed to cigarette smoke. Low levels of FANCD2 leads to DNA damage, triggering cancer. Cigarette smoke curbs the production of 'caretaker' proteins, like FANCD2, which normally prevent cancer by fixing damages in DNA and causing faulty cells to commit suicide.

Research has shown that smoking is strongly linked to lung cancer, but this discovery may help scientists improve treatments for lung disease in the future.

"These findings show the important role FANCD2 plays in protecting lung cells against cigarette smoke, and may explain why cigarette smoke is so toxic to these cells," said lead author Laura Hays, Ph.D., research assistant professor of medicine (hematology/medical oncology) and member of the OHSU Cancer Institute. Smoking and cancer full article.

PREVENTING PROSTATE CANCER AND BPH: PROSTATE-HEALTH EXPERT AVAILABLE (NATIONAL MEN'S HEALTH WEEK IS JUNE 9-15)
Source: PR Newswire
Date: May 9, 2008
Author: SOURCE Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center

The risk of the two major prostate diseases, cancer and benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), can be reduced by changes in lifestyle, such as avoiding smoking, maintaining a normal weight and eating a healthy diet. Alan Kristal, Dr.P.H., associate head of the Cancer Prevention Program at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, has conducted many studies that suggest men need not feel helpless against prostate cancer or BPH. . .

Heavy smokers who are diagnosed with prostate cancer have twice the risk of dying from their disease. Smoking may promote prostate cancer growth through several mechanisms. One is that it can increase the amount of circulating androgens, which fuels the growth of malignant prostate cells. Another theory is related to tobacco as a source of cadmium, a heavy metal that has been linked to prostate cancer in several occupational-health studies. This known human carcinogen inhibits DNA repair, which allows cancer cells to mutate and multiply. Prostate cancer and smoking full article.

Women Who Quit Smoking Lower Heart Risks Quickly
Source: HealthDay [HealthScout]
Date: May 7, 2008
Author: Amanda Gardner, HealthDay Reporter

New research shows that women who quit smoking have a 21 percent lower risk of dying from coronary heart disease within five years of extinguishing their last cigarette.

The risks of dying from other conditions also decline after quitting, although the time frame varies depending on the disease.

"The harms of smoking are reversible and can decline to the level of nonsmokers," said study author Stacey Kenfield, whose report is in the May 7 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. "For some conditions like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, it can take more than 20 years, but there is a rapid reduction for others." Smoking and heart disease full article.


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