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Smoking and Tobacco

Smoking, asthma and the elderly

03/09/2001

Question:

IF AN INDIVIDUAL INSIST ON SMOKING AROUND AN ELDERLY PERSON WITH ASTHMA WHAT ARE THE RESULTS?

Answer:

There are many studies that show the negative effects of `passive smoking` or environmental tobacco smoke on persons with asthma. While most of the reports are with children, there are similar affects on asthma in adults of all ages. One study identified the main triggers of asthma episodes (exacerbations) and these included a sore throat or cold,increased dust exposure and passive smoke exposure in the past year. Being around cigarette smoke over time led to more trouble with asthma. Being exposed to tobacco smoke in work settings also increases adult asthma problems. In a study in India, adults with more tobacco exposure had more asthma problems such as wheezing. It is important that persons with asthma should avoid tobacco smoke exposure.

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Response by:

Karen L Ahijevych, PhD, RN, FAAN Karen L Ahijevych, PhD, RN, FAAN
Professor, College of Nursing
Professor, College of Public Health
College of Nursing
The Ohio State University