ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Traffic, Dust Linked to Asthma in Kids
Climate Change Could Sting Allergy, Asthma Sufferers
Air Quality Better in Northeast, Midwest
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Birds Don't Miss a Beat
Wristbands May Lessen Nausea After Radiation
No Verdict Yet on Grape Seed Extract vs. Breast Cancer
ANIMAL CARE
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Safe Toys for Dogs
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
BONES & JOINTS
Many Americans Fall Short on Their Vitamin D
Fruits and Veggies May Strengthen Bones
Occupational Therapy Plus Exercise Benefits Osteoarthritis
CANCER
No Verdict Yet on Grape Seed Extract vs. Breast Cancer
Minorities Distrust Medical System More
U.S. Reported 25,000 Cases of HPV-Related Cancers Annually
CAREGIVING
Simpler Sleep Apnea Treatment Seems Effective, Affordable
Mild Flu Season Coming to a Close
Obese Children More Likely to Suffer Lower Body Injuries
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Health Tip: Are You Anemic?
Years of Exposure to Traffic Pollution Raises Blood Pressure
Secondhand Smoke Quickly Affects Blood Vessels
COSMETIC
Contact Lenses Boost Kids' Self-Image
Science May Banish Bad Hair Days
Mouse Study Finds Molecule That Tells Hair to Grow
DENTAL, ORAL
Hormones May Be to Blame for Women's Cavity Rates
An Oral Approach to Heart Disease
Gum Disease Treatment Doesn't Cut Preterm Birth Risk
DIABETES
Spices, Herbs Boost Health for Diabetics
Findings Challenge Tight Glucose Control for Critically Ill Patients
Laughter May Lower Heart Attack Risk in Diabetics
DIET, NUTRITION
Asparagus May Ease Hangover
Olive Oil May Be Key to Mediterranean Diet's Benefits
Meat Additives May Be Dangerous for Kidney Patients
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Common Pesticide Tied to Development Delays in Kids
Pilots May Face Greater Cancer Risk
Former Inmates at Increased Risk for High Blood Pressure
EYE CARE, VISION
Decorative Halloween Eye Lenses May Pose Serious Risks
Poor Night Vision May Predict Age-Related Eye Disease
FDA Goes After Unapproved Eye Washes, Skin Ointments
FITNESS
Yoga Can Ease Lower Back Pain
Almost Two-Thirds of Americans Meet Exercise Guidelines
Tai Chi and Qigong Offer Many Health Benefits: Review
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Gum Chewing May Speed Colon Surgery Recovery
Intestinal Bacteria Trigger Immune Response
Traditional Nonsurgical GERD Treatments Not Impressive
GENERAL HEALTH
Swine Flu May Pose Problems for Pregnant Women
Swine Flu Loves a Crowd
Multivitamins Might Prolong Life
HEAD & NECK
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
Imaging Sheds Light on How Acupuncture Works
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Fewer Heart Attacks After England Goes Smoke-Free
Dark Chocolate May Lower Stroke Risk
Too-Low Blood Pressure Can Also Bring Danger
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Swine Flu Is Now a Pandemic Says W.H.O.
More Medicinal Uses for Pomegranate
Bacterial Infections May Succumb to Honey
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Gene Variation Found in Boys With Delinquent Peers
Time to Remind Teens About Sun Protection
Frequent Feedings May Be Making Babies Fat
MEN'S HEALTH
Sunlight May Help Protect Men From Kidney Cancer
Lots of Sex May Prevent Erectile Dysfunction
Eating Fast Until Full Triples Overweight Risk
MENTAL HEALTH
A Little Alcohol May Stave Off Alzheimer's
Keeping a Healthy Holiday Balance
A Simple 'Thank You' Brings Rewards to All
PAIN
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Acupuncture May Ease Depression During Pregnancy
Pre-Pregnancy Weight Linked to Babies' Heart Problems
Sleeping Could Help Women Lose The Baby Fat
SENIORS
Living Alone Increases Odds of Developing Dementia
Seniors Who Volunteer May Live Longer
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Daylight Savings: Not a Bright Time for All
Sleeping Could Help Women Lose The Baby Fat
Meditation May Help Put Primary Insomnia to Bed
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Green Tea May Help Treat Uterine Fibroids
Natural Relief for Painful Menstrual Cramps
Active Young Women Need Calcium, Vitamin D
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Years of Heavy Smoking Raises Heart Risks

FRIDAY, May 15 (HealthDay News) -- Highlighting the negative impact tobacco use has on cardiovascular health, researchers say that heavy smokers were 2.5 times more likely to die than their non-smoking peers during a 30-year study in Norway.

The newly available research found that nonsmokers lived longer and experienced fewer incidents of heart attack and cardiovascular disease than smokers, especially when compared with heavy smokers (those who lit up at least 20 cigarettes a day).

Smokers were also at greater risk of developing diabetes and strokes than nonsmokers, according to the study findings, presented last week at the EuroPRevent 2009 conference in Stockholm, Sweden.

"What these results show is the cumulative long-term association between smoking and death and cardiovascular risk," investigator Haakon Meyer, a professor at the University of Oslo and Norwegian Institute of Public Health, said in a news release issued by the European Society of Cardiology. "Around two-thirds of the middle-aged heavy-smoking men and half the heavy-smoking women had died or had a cardiovascular disease within the next 30 years. The incidence was much lower in never-smokers and reflects the tremendously adverse effect of smoking on health and longevity. The difference in outcome between the never-smokers and heavy smokers was substantial."

The study began in 1974 with 54,075 middle-aged Norwegian men and women agreeing to take part in a basic cardiovascular examination. By matching the participants to population records over the next three decades, the researchers recorded 13,103 deaths, then followed-up on the living participants with a questionnaire during the mid-2000s.

The team found that 45 percent of males considered to be heavy smokers had died during the study period compared with 18 percent of the men who never smoked; among the women, 33 percent of heavy smokers died while 13 percent of the non-smoking women did.

"These results show what a tremendous impact smoking has on mortality," Meyer said. "We are talking about very high numbers of people."

The questionnaire responses revealed that 21 percent of the heavy-smoking men had experienced a heart attack compared with 10 percent of their non-smoking peers. For women, the rate was similar: 11 percent among the heavy-smoking female survivors and 4 percent among those who never smoked.

"This study underlines the public health messages about smoking. We have seen declines in the prevalence of smoking in developed countries, but challenges still remain. Certain population groups -- young women, immigrant communities -- still have high rates of smoking, and there's more to be done here."

More information

The American Heart Association has more about how smoking increases the risk of cardiovascular disease.



-- Kevin McKeever



SOURCE: European Society of Cardiology, news release, May 8, 2009

Last Updated: May 15, 2009

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