Tobacco Causes 20% of Deaths from Coronary Heart Disease: Report

According to a new brief released on Tuesday by the World Health Organization (WHO), World Heart Federation and Newcastle University Australia, 1.9 million people die each year from tobacco-induced heart disease.

Ahead of World Heart Day, which falls on September 29, the organizations brought up the data, reports UNB.

This is equal to one in five of all heart disease deaths, warn the writers of the study, who encourage all tobacco consumers to stop and prevent a heart attack, stressing that smokers are more likely than non-smokers to suffer an acute coronary incident at a younger age.

The risk of heart disease is raised by only a few cigarettes a day, casual smoking, or exposure to second-hand smoke.

But if tobacco users take immediate action and quit, then their risk of heart disease will decrease by 50% after one year of not smoking, WHO said.

“Given the current level of evidence on tobacco and cardiovascular health and the health benefits of quitting smoking, failing to offer cessation services to patients with heart disease could be considered clinical malpractice or negligence.

Dr Eduardo Bianco, Chair of the World Heart Federation Tobacco Expert Group, said that cardiology societies should train their members in smoking cessation, as well as supporting and even guiding tobacco control advocacy efforts.

The brief also reveals that around 200,000 deaths from coronary heart disease each year are caused by smokeless tobacco. Blood pressure is also elevated by E-cigarettes, raising the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Moreover, high blood pressure and heart disease increase the risk of severe Covid-19.

A recent WHO survey found that among people dying of Covid-19 in Italy, 67% had high blood pressure and in Spain, 43% of people who developed Covid-19 were living with heart disease.

“Governments have a responsibility to protect the health of their people and help reverse the tobacco epidemic. Making our communities smoke-free reduces the number of tobacco-related hospital admissions, which is more important than ever in the context of the current pandemic,” said Dr Vinayak Prasad, Unit Lead of the WHO No Tobacco Unit.

A crucial factor in minimizing heart disease is tobacco control.

By raising the tax on tobacco products, imposing bans on tobacco advertisements and providing programs to help people give up tobacco, governments will help tobacco consumers quit, WHO said.

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