Smokers at risk from their own 'second-hand' smoke

January 29, 2010

It is well known that smokers damage their health by directly inhaling cigarette smoke. Now, research published in BioMed Central's open access journal Environmental Health has shown that they are at additional risk from breathing environmental tobacco smoke, contrary to the prevailing assumption that such risks would be negligible in comparison to those incurred by actually smoking.

Maria Teresa Piccardo worked with a team of researchers from the National cancer Research Institute, Genoa, Italy, to study the exposure of newsagents in the city to harmful cigarette smoke. She said, "Newsagents were chosen because they work alone in small newsstands, meaning that any tobacco smoke in the air they breathe is strictly correlated to the number of cigarettes smoked by that newsagent. We studied the contribution environmental tobacco smoke made to carcinogen exposure in 15 active ."

The researchers found that environmental may have a significant impact on smokers' health. For someone who smokes 14 cigarettes a day, their own second hand smoke resulted in exposure the equivalent of an extra 2.6 cigarettes. According to Piccardo, "Both active and passive smoking contributions should always be considered in studies about health of active smokers."

Explore further: Avoid the hookah and save your teeth

More information: Is the smokers exposure to environmental tobacco smoke negligible? Maria Teresa Piccardo, Anna Stella and Federico Valerio, Environmental Health (in press),

Related Stories

Avoid the hookah and save your teeth

November 8, 2005

Researchers say smoking a hookah is becoming increasingly trendy item in Mediterranean restaurants, cafes and bars -- but it can damage your teeth.

Recommended for you

How the finch changes its tune

August 3, 2015

Like top musicians, songbirds train from a young age to weed out errors and trim variability from their songs, ultimately becoming consistent and reliable performers. But as with human musicians, even the best are not machines. ...

Machine Translates Thoughts into Speech in Real Time

December 21, 2009

( -- By implanting an electrode into the brain of a person with locked-in syndrome, scientists have demonstrated how to wirelessly transmit neural signals to a speech synthesizer. The "thought-to-speech" process ...

1 comment

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

1 / 5 (2) Feb 01, 2010
Gee, what genius put this together on their etch-a-sketch....
If second hand smoke is bad for the guy next to me, OF COURSE its bad for me too, cuz its hitting me immediately after im done taking a drag off my smoke....

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.