Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Smoking and Aging related Diseases

It is very well known that smoking is an important risk factor for many diseases, particularly, cardiovascular, neoplastic and respiratory diseases which are the main causes of death in industrialized countries. It is predicted that by the year 2020, smoking would have become the major cause of death and disability.

Smoking is also responsible for the development of many pathological conditions which are particularly frequent during old age. These conditions include dementia, osteoporosis, diabetes, peptic ulcer, gastro-esophageal reflux, erectile dysfunction, senile macular degeneration, nuclear cataract and alterations of hearing and skin. Smokers have to compromise not only on the expectancy of life but also on the quality of life. The increased frequency of cardiovascular and cerebrovascular illnesses among smokers increases the risk of Alzheimer’s disease in later life. Compared to smokers, current smokers have an increased risk of dementia and cognitive decline differing from 40 percent to 80 percent. Research shows that smokers have higher average systolic blood pressure values compared to non-smokers. Smokers also do not seem to have physiological nocturnal decrease of the blood pressure levels. Read more...

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