A research says that exposure to secondhand smoke increases the risk of getting a stroke by 30% for nonsmokers.
A new study says that nonsmokers may have an increased 30% risk of getting a stroke due to secondhand smoke.
The researchers found that even after adjustment for other stroke factors such as hypertension, diabetes and heart disease, the 30% stroke risk for nonsmokers remained. They used data from the Reasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS) study; a population-based, longitudinal study investigating cardiovascular disease events and mortality among white Americans (55%) and African American (45%) adults aged greater than 45 years in the US.
“Our findings suggest the possibility for adverse health outcomes such as stroke among nonsmokers exposed to SHS and add to the body of evidence supporting stricter smoking regulations,” lead author, Angela M Malek of the Department of Public Health Sciences, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston said.
A further analysis of the type of stroke (Ischemic vs Hemorrhagic) was performed and showed that most strokes were due to blockage of blood flow to the brain (352 ischemic, 50 hemorrhagic and 26 strokes of unknown subtype).
“Future research will need to investigate the role of cardiovascular disease risk factors in the association and explore potential exposure to additional environmental variables, such as ambient air pollutants, in relation to stroke,” said Malek.
The current study included almost 22,000 participants (38% African American, 45% male) with 23% reporting secondhand smoke exposure in the past year. The study was published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
During the period of April 2003 to March 2012, 428 strokes were reported.