Welcome to Current TV
Analyses: Heart attack rates fall 17% after smoking bans enacted
Two separate analyses released Monday each found that heart attack rates fall 17% within a year after smoking bans take effect. One analysis, which included 13 studies, appears in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association. A second analysis, which considered 11 studies, appears in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
Cigarette smoke can trigger a heart attack in people with underlying heart disease by causing clots or spasms in the blood vessels, says David Goff, a spokesman for the American Heart Association who wasn't involved in either study.
Given that there are about 920,000 heart attacks every year, the studies suggests that public smoking bans could prevent more than 150,000 of these, according to the Cardiology paper.
Taken together, the findings provide strong, consistent evidence that the country should enact more smoke-free laws, Goff says.
"This is a huge, huge effect for a very, very low cost," says Stanton Glantz of the University of California-San Francisco, co-author of the Circulation study.
Smoke-free laws reduce heart attacks in three ways, Glantz says. First, they protect smokers themselves. Second, they protect non-smokers — especially waiters and bartenders — from secondhand smoke. Third, they encourage people to quit or smoke less by making it more difficult for people to find place to light up.
more from Community:
from the community