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Most people know that smoking is bad for your lungs and causes cancer. But few are aware of the effects of smoking on their heart. When you smoke, toxic chemicals from tobacco enter your blood stream.

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Introduction

Smoking Most people know that smoking is bad for your lungs and causes cancer. But few are aware of the effects of smoking on their heart. When you smoke, toxic chemicals from tobacco enter your blood stream. These chemicals send signals to your heart to beat harder and faster, causing blood vessels to constrict and forcing blood to travel through a smaller space. Both of the effects cause high blood pressure. A recent article in the Journal of the American Medical Association suggested that the benefits of quitting smoking are enormous, particularly lowering the risk of heart disease by almost 50%. Besides causing lung cancer, it has been linked to bladder and prostate cancer. Stopping will improve your stamina and sense of taste and smell. Smoking also increases the risk of stroke, and women who smoke and use oral contraceptives are at a much higher risk of having a stroke than women who don't smoke. ...read more.

Middle

? The best way to reduce the risk of getting cancer whilst simultaneously improving your general health and appearance is to stop smoking. Asthma Definition Asthma is defined as variable obstruction or narrowing of the main breathing tubes, the bronchi, in response to a number of different insults or stimuli. The variation in the airways can occur spontaneously or as a result of treatment. Incidence/Age/Sex The incidence of asthma is a increasing in the UK and Europe, a trend attributed to a variety of causes. Recent surveys have suggested an incidence of asthma in children of around 1:5 and 1: 10 in adults. Causes/Preventions The cause of asthma is described as "multifactorial", which fact means that there are probably very many different causes including hereditary factors and no one simple way to deal with them. In some older individuals exposure to something at work can cause asthma this is termed occupational asthma. Asthma and all allergic diseases are clearly increasing. ...read more.

Conclusion

Complications Most asthmatic patients are easily treated by their local general practitioner with few complications. Rarely asthma becomes harder to control and the patient may require courses of steroid tablets or admission to hospital. Some cases are always referred to hospital specialist clinics for example if an occupational cause for the condition is suspected. Investigations Usually the diagnosis is clear from the history and examining the patient. Confirmation may be required by demonstrating allergies, by skin tests, or changes in airway capacity by breathing tests, (Peak Flow Measurement). Rarely challenge tests can be performed. Treatment The cornerstone of treatment is regular inhaled corticosteroids. These are usually in brown or orange inhalers and come in a variety of puffers (powder, gas, automatic etc e.g. ). These must be taken regularly and are termed preventers The relief of symptoms is by inhaled bronchodilators or relievers usually in blue devices. These are usually only used if the symptoms are troublesome. In a nutshell, avoid anything you're allergic to and take the preventer ALWAYS. ...read more.

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