Editorials

Passive smoking's role in diabetes

BMJ 2006; 332 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.332.7549.1044 (Published 04 May 2006) Cite this as: BMJ 2006;332:1044
  1. Demosthenes B Panagiotakos ([email protected]), lecturer in epidemiology,
  2. Christos Pitsavos, associate professor of cardiology
  1. Office of Biostatistics-Epidemiology, Department of Nutrition-Dietetics, Harokopio University, Athens, Greece
  2. First Cardiology Clinic, School of Medicine, University of Athens, Athens, Greece

    More evidence of the harmfulness of tobacco smoke

    Smoking is the main cause of lung cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and peripheral atherosclerosis and one of the most important risk factors for cardiovascular disease. In particular, the risk attributed to current smoking varies from 40% for coronary heart disease to more than 60% for cancers of the pharynx and oesophagus and more than 80% for lung cancer.1 In addition, the exposure of non-smokers to environmental tobacco smoke has been associated with a substantial increase in their risk of coronary heart disease and cancer.2 3 Several investigators have suggested that both active and passive smoking affects the cardiovascular system through endothelial dysfunction, increases in oxidised low density lipoprotein cholesterol, platelet adherence, inflammation, and mitochondrial and oxidative damage, as well as an acute deterioration in the elastic properties of the aorta.4 5 6 …

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