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Smoking Bans Reduce the Risk of Heart Attacks Associated With Secondhand Smoke

Posted Oct 16 2009 10:01pm

3752466250_e4e0b5ef69 Smoking bans are effective at reducing the risk of heart attacks and heart disease associated with exposure to secondhand smoke, says a new report from the Institute of Medicine. The report also confirms there is sufficient evidence that breathing secondhand smoke boosts nonsmokers’ risk for heart problems, adding that indirect evidence indicating that even relatively brief exposures could lead to a heart attack is compelling.

“It’s clear that smoking bans work,” said Lynn Goldman, professor of environmental health sciences, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, and chair of the committee of experts that wrote the report. “Bans reduce the risks of heart attack in nonsmokers as well as smokers. Further research could explain in greater detail how great the effect is for each of these groups and how secondhand smoke produces its toxic effects. However, there is no question that smoking bans have a positive health effect.”

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