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The Heath Effects Of Smoking Essay, Research Paper

?The Health Effects of Smoking?

In this report I am going to tell you some of the irreversible health effects of smoking and why some people start smoking. Some of the health effects caused by smoking are non-small cell and small cell lung cancer. An irreversible health effect is a permanent change in the structure and/or function of an organ system or a permanently increased risk of suffering from a disease or some other threat to health. Irreversible effects vary in intensity and are related both to the amount and duration of exposure and the age at which the person is initially exposed. A risk or effect may diminish over time, but it may also increase. Even after exposure has ended risk may remain for many years after. Smoking causes many diseases and health problems. (internet source)

One major health hazard caused by smoking is lung cancer. Lung cancer is caused by particulate, from tar, that gather on the airways of the lungs. Another health problem caused by smoking is Bronchitis. Tobacco smoke aggravates the membranes lining the bronchial tubes. Smoking also causes emphysema, pregnancy problems, and heart disease. 191,000 people in the U.S. die of smoking related heart disease in one year. Another problem smoking causes is a cataract. Cataracts are the leading cause of blindness in the world, over 50,000,000 people suffer from them. Smoking may also cause Osteoporosis. Osteoporosis decreases bone mass and expands the space between bone cells. Some scientists say that smoking may block the intestines’ ability to absorb calcium. If you smoke, you have an increased chance of cancer of the bladder and kidney, leukemia, eye problems, and a higher risk of AIDS. The chances of a person developing cancer from smoking depends on how long they smoked, number of cigarettes smoked per day, tar content of the cigarette, and how deeply they inhale. (encyclopedia)

In 1995 an estimated 157,000 Americans died of lung cancer and 169,000 new cases were diagnosed. Although the incidence of this disease in men has recently declined, it continues to increase in women. Since 1987, lung cancer has been the major cause of cancer death in women, surpassing the death rate for breast cancer, which for 40 years was the leading cause of cancer death in women. MSKCC physicians believe that 90 percent of all lung cancers are smoking related. Second-hand smoke increases the risk for nonsmokers as well. Other risk factors include exposure to certain industrial substances, such as asbestos, and exposure to radon may also increase risk, especially in cigarette smokers. (internet source)

There are two major types of lung cancer: small cell an d non-small cell. Each affects a different type of cell in the lung and grows and spreads in a different way, and so are treated differently. Non-small cell lung cancer can be further divided into three categories named for the type of cells found in the cancer: squamous cell carcinoma, adenocarcinoma, and large cell carcinoma. (encyclopedia)

A diagnosis of lung cancer will also include the stage, or extent, of the disease. Small cell lung cancer is described as limited, which means the cancer is confined to a portion of the chest, or extensive, which means the cancer has spread throughout or from the chest. Non-small cell lung cancer has four stages. In stage one the cancer is confined to the lung; in stages two and three the cancer is confined to the chest; and in stage four the cancer has spread from the chest. The treatment of choice for lung cancers that have not spread beyond the lung is surgery. When the disease has spread, treatment will often include radiation therapy and chemotherapy. At Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, treatment for lung cancer results in higher survival rates, fewer complications, and a shorter length of stay for surgery patients than at most other institutions. In addition to standard treatment, MSKCC offers a number of clinical trials for patients at all stages of disease. (magazine article)

For people who have had stage one lung cancer and are at risk for another lung cancer. There are four clinical trials offered by MSKCC. One clinical trial is testing the effectiveness of auto-fluorescent bronchoscope in identifying cancerous tissue. In this procedure, lung tissue is illuminated with a fluorescent light. (normal tissue lights up and cancerous tissue does not) For patients who have large tumors, MSKCC is investigating the effectiveness of chemotherapy to shrink the tumor prior to surgery. This approach is new stage one lung cancer and the results from this trial are not expected for another few years. For patients who are not eligible for surgery due to other physical problems, MSKCC offers a clinical trial using three-dimensional conformable radiotherapy. This specialized treatment enables doctors to administer high doses of radiation directly to the tumor while minimizing damage to surrounding tissue. They are also participation in a national trial on the use of retinoic acid to prevent new lung cancer in patients who have already had lung cancer. (magazine article)

There are also a number of options for patients who have stage two or stage three disease. A clinical trial investigating the use of chemotherapy to shrink tumors prior to surgery initially involved only stage three patients. The effectiveness of this treatment led MSKCC to expand the trial to include stage two patients. It is now being further investigated as part of a national clinical trial for patients whose cancer has spread to the lymph nodes. Other trials now under way are looking at the use of monoclonal antibodies, newer types of chemotherapy, and chemotherapy with enhancers. (internet source)

For patients whose small cell cancer is confined to the lung, MSKCC offers simultaneous chemotherapy and three-dimensional conformal radiotherapy.Once patients are in remission, they are immunized with a cancer ?vaccine? that uses monoclonal antibodies. MSKCC also offers a unique chemotherapy program for patients whose small cell lung cancer has spread from the chest. This program uses four remission by this method also receive a cancer ?vaccine.? They also provide lung cancer patients with leading-edge supportive care. (encyclopedia)

There is much other health risks. There are over 4,000 chemicals in cigarette smoke and 200 of those are known poisons. Pregnant women who smoke may have miscarriages, low birth weight, still birth, and premature birth. (internet source)

There are a few reasons why people smoke. Most teenagers smoke because they want to rebel, they think it will make them cool, and, if everyone is doing it, it makes them feel like part of a group. Adults usually smoke because they find it relaxing or refreshing. These two opposite effects are caused by nicotine. Another reason people smoke is because ads such as Joe Camel and Marlboro Man, that make smoking seem cool, sexy, and attractive. Also, because it is seen in movies, on TV, and at sporting events.

Cigarettes have one main dangerous ingredient in them. That dangerous ingredient is nicotine. It is a poisonous alkaloid and is what makes smoking addictive. It can act like a stimulant or a tranquilizer. In tobacco smoke, there are two really dangerous elements. They are carbon monoxide and tar. Carbon monoxide is a gas. Carbon monoxide disrupts the supply of oxygen to tissues and organs, which includes the brain and heart. Tar is made up of different particulate substances. Tar collects on the airways of the lungs and impairs their functioning. If a person gets too many particulate on their lungs, they can cause chronic bronchitis and emphysema. (encyclopedia)

Smoking reduces your sex appeal! It is the leading cause of male impotency and decreases male fertility by reducing sperm and lowering testosterone levels. Smoking causes skin to wrinkle, fingers to turn yellow and bad breath. In women, it reduces fertility, causes pregnancy problems, and causes cancer of the reproduction organs. It also increases chances of osteoporosis and diabetes. (magazine article)

If those aren’t good enough reasons to stop smoking, here are some more. Quitting smoking will improve your respiratory system, and your performance, mentally, physically, and sexually. It will also save money and reduce medical bills. Quitting will also enhance taste and smell. People who have quit smoking are less likely to die of lung disease and heart disease. After 15 years of not smoking, an ex-smokers risk of cancer are about the same as a person that never smoked. (internet sources)

As I mentioned before, cigarette ads, such as Joe Camel and Marlboro Man, influence people to smoke. The tobacco industry spends over five billion dollars a year on advertising. They have even been banned from having television and radio commercials. Some say that the cigarette companies target teenagers in their ads, but the companies deny that their ads are directed towards anybody under legal smoking age. One tobacco company’s lawyer said, “Nicotine is addictive. We are, then, in the business of selling nicotine, an addictive drug effective in the release of stress mechanisms”, in response to people saying that tobacco companies are intentionally adding nicotine to keep people addicted. (magazine article)

Second-Hand smoke causes 3,000 deaths from lung cancer, 13,000 deaths from other cancers, and 37,000 deaths from lung disease in the United States, each year. Second-Hand smoke, or passive smoke, is not as hazardous as mainstream smoke, it is still a dangerous matter. More people die each year from second-hand smoke than from car accidents. A report by the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, declared that second-hand smoke had killed 62,000 people from heart attacks and had caused 200,000 nonfatal heart attacks. Half of all American children live with a person who smokes and nine million kids breathe cigarette smoke regularly. Recently, there has been a law passed to protect waiters and waitresses from second-hand smoke. There have been several other efforts to control second-hand smoke. One act to stop non-smokers intake of cigarette smoke happened in 1969. ASH (Action on Smoking and Health) filed a petition to stop people from smoking on airlines. It passed and now there is no smoking on public airlines. (internet sources)

Smoking is a major problem in the U.S. Over 430,000 Americans die each year from the effects of cigarette smoking. Every day, 4,000 teenagers start smoking. Most teens start smoking at age 13. Remember, no matter how long you have been smoking, once you stop, the health hazards are immediately reversed. It is never too late to stop and there are plenty of people and products to help you quit. (internet source)

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