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Secondhand Smoke Exposure and Cardiovascular Effects: Making Sense of the Evidence

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Data suggest that exposure to secondhand smoke can result in heart disease in nonsmoking adults. Recently, progress has been made in reducing involuntary exposure to secondhand smoke through legislation banning smoking in workplaces, restaurants, and other public places. The effect of legislation to ban smoking and its effects on the cardiovascular health of nonsmoking adults, however, remains a question.

Secondhand Smoke Exposure and Cardiovascular Effects reviews available scientific literature to assess the relationship between secondhand smoke exposure and acute coronary events. The authors, experts in secondhand smoke exposure and toxicology, clinical cardiology, epidemiology, and statistics, find that there is about a 25 to 30 percent increase in the risk of coronary heart disease from exposure to secondhand smoke. Their findings agree with the 2006 Surgeon General's Report conclusion that there are increased risks of coronary heart disease morbidity and mortality among men and women exposed to secondhand smoke. However, the authors note that the evidence for determining the magnitude of the relationship between chronic secondhand smoke exposure and coronary heart disease is not very strong.

Public health professionals will rely upon Secondhand Smoke Exposure and Cardiovascular Effects for its survey of critical epidemiological studies on the effects of smoking bans and evidence of links between secondhand smoke exposure and cardiovascular events, as well as its findings and recommendations.

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Suggested Citation

Institute of Medicine. 2010. Secondhand Smoke Exposure and Cardiovascular Effects: Making Sense of the Evidence. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. https://doi.org/10.17226/12649.

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Publication Info

240 pages | 6 x 9
ISBNs:
  • Paperback: 978-0-309-13839-0
  • Ebook: 978-0-309-15039-2
DOI: https://doi.org/10.17226/12649
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