Smokers are at increased risk of dying from cardiovascular disease when exposed to high levels of air pollution, according to a study that analyzed the effects of exposure to fine particles (PM 2.5) in smokers and non-smokers, in which the Institute of Global Health of Barcelona participated.
This work, published in the journal Environmental Research, is based on previous research that had already found an accumulative interaction between PM 2.5, smoking cigarettes and lung cancer. The research was conducted with data on about half a million American smokers and non-smokers, older than 30 years of age, who are part of the American Cancer Society’s Study II.
Michelle C. Turner, a researcher of ISGlobal and the first author of the study, emphasizes that the addition of smoking cigarettes “while being exposed to air pollution increases the risk of dying from cardiovascular disease and diabetes, although the accumulative effect is smaller than what we previously found for lung cancer.”
According to their results, for every 100,000 people, 318 deaths from cardiovascular disease and diabetes are attributable to smoking cigarettes, and 36 from exposure to high levels of PM 2.5 particles. The combination of both smoking tobacco and being exposed to air pollution causes 32 additional deaths from cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
“Reducing smoking would have a greater impact on reducing mortality than reducing exposure to air pollution.” However, being exposed to fewer fine particles will also help to prevent a proportion of the mortality attributed to smoking cigarettes.
Source: Agencia SINC