Scientists from Johns Hopkins found that people who smoked tobacco cigarettes developed heart failure at twice the rate of those who never smoked.
This higher rate occurred in two major heart failure subtypes and confirms that cigarette smoking presents a big risk factor for both.
The research is published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology and was conducted by Kunihiro Matsushita et al.
Heart failure is a progressive condition in which the heart loses its ability to pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs.
It’s one of the most common causes of disability and death in developed countries, with more than 6 million adults living with heart failure in the U.S. alone, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention most recent data.
Besides cigarette smoking, risk factors for heart failure include obesity, hypertension, diabetes, coronary artery disease, and advanced age.
The study is thought to be one of the first to assess smoking’s association with both heart failure subtypes: reduced ejection fraction and preserved ejection fraction.
In the study, the researchers analyzed records from a long-running study of nearly 9,500 individuals in four U.S communities.
They found that participants who had stopped smoking retained a strongly increased risk of either type of heart failure for decades after they’d stopped smoking.
These findings underline the importance of preventing smoking in the first place, especially among children and young adults.
The team hopes the results will encourage current smokers to quit sooner rather than later, since the harm of smoking can last for as many as three decades.
If you care about smoking, please read studies about smoking may increase heart disease risk by 200% and e-cigarette smoke may cause lung cancer, bladder disease.
For more information about heart failure, please see recent studies about Aspirin linked to higher risk of heart failure, and results showing this drug can be a low-cost heart failure treatment.
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