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Smoking Cigarettes - Most Devastating For Women

Posted by Jane Akre
Tuesday, May 19, 2009 10:14 AM EST
Category: On The Road, Major Medical, Protecting Your Family, In The Workplace
Tags: Lung Disease, COPD, Cancer, Women's Health, Smoking, Big Tobacco, Cigarettes

Smoking has an earlier impact on women's lungs with fewer cigarettes, this study shows.  

Women and Smoking


IMAGE SOURCE: © iStockPhoto / quit smoking / author: RobHadfield


The devastating effects of smoking have been publicly known for about 40 years, and studies have shown that smoking is most likely to lead to lung cancer in women. 

A study presented Monday at the American Thoracic Society, gives women another reason to quit. 

Research shows that gender makes women more vulnerable to the effects of smoking than previously known, dispelling the myth that smoking a few cigarettes is safer.   The research finds that lung damage hits women at an earlier age and after less time smoking

"The gender difference in COPD susceptibility seems to be most important when smoking exposure is low. Women may tolerate small amounts of tobacco worse than men," Dr. Inga-Cecilie Soerheim, co-author of the research explained to Medical News Today.

COPD or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease was studied in research data from Norway involving 954 current and ex-smokers. 

Dr. Soerheim, a research fellow at the Channing Laboratory, a division of Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School says all had obstruction of the airways or COPD caused by smoking.  They were compared to 955 controls. 

She and her team found women with pulmonary disease lost more lung function than men when both groups were under the age of 60. The smaller lungs of women may be one factor. Hormones or the different ways men and women metabolize cigarette smoke could also account for the differences. 

Dr. Soerheim concludes,   "There is no such thing as a safe amount of cigarette smoking. Our data suggest that this is particularly true for female smokers." 

For the first time since the mid-1960s, the number of Americans who smoke cigarettes has fallen below 20 percent, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The American Thoracic Society is meeting in San Diego and is a medical association of more than 15,000 members, which focuses on advancing lung, critical care, and sleep medicine. #

1 Comment

Posted by wuegf23we
Tuesday, May 19, 2009 11:05 PM EST

Comments for this article are closed.

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