It has become an ubiquitous cliche that smoking is bad for your health. Public health service posters, news etc. about the impact of smoking on healthy living are seen everywhere and may even be printed on the cigarette pack itself with a warning from the Surgeon General. But, a recent study by Dr Brian D. Carter, an epidemiologist at the American Cancer Society and published in the New England Journal of Medicine, revealed an even more shocking impact of smoking on health, which is considered more profound than previously thought.
Before the revelation of this new study, the existing data showed that smoking was responsible for half a million deaths in the United States every year. It accounted for 21 diseases directly attributable to smoking and 12 types of cancer. However, after the result of this new study was collated, it added at least 5 diseases and 60,000 more deaths to the existing mortality rate, as reported by New York Times.
The research was done on an immense scale that had over one million people participants who were followed for ten years. The health data from this new findings revealed that in addition to the well-known hazards of lung cancer, chronic lung disease, artery disease, heart attacks and stroke, the researchers found that smoking was linked to significantly increased risks of infection, kidney disease, intestinal disease caused by inadequate blood flow, and heart and lung ailments not previously attributed to tobacco.
“The smoking epidemic is still ongoing, and there is a need to evaluate how smoking is hurting us as a society, to support clinicians and policy making in public health,” said Dr Brian D. Carter.