In Mexico, cardiovascular diseases are the main cause of death (128,731 deceases in 2015); its prevention and control represent a high cost. Smoking is one of the main risk factors for cardiovascular disease.
Chemicals in cigarettes cause inflammation of the arteries, which can narrow them and limit the blood flow. This predisposes the subject to a series of cardiovascular diseases. In the cardiovascular system, cigarettes may cause:
- Atherosclerosis, by increasing the formation of plaque in the arteries. It is the most common complication when associated with diabetes, hypertension and hypercholesterolemia (high blood cholesterol), due to smoking.
- Coronary disease, heart attack and stroke, by clot formation in arteries and veins.
- Peripheral artery disease, by narrowing the arteries and decreasing the blood flow to arms, hands, legs and feet. In extreme situations, a limb amputation is required.
- Abdominal aortic aneurysm, by damaging the aorta, the main artery that takes oxygen to the whole body. Nearly every death is caused by tobacco use, and women who smoke have a higher risk compared to men.
For these reasons, smoking abstention or cessation is important for cardiovascular disease prevention and treatment. The first step to stop smoking is to contact your doctor.
Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Geografía. Principales causas de mortalidad por residencia habitual, grupos de edad y sexo del fallecido. Tabulados básicos. 2017. Available from: http://www.inegi.org.mx/est/contenidos/proyectos/registros/vitales/mortalidad/tabulados/PC.asp?t=14&c=11817
Secretaría de Gobernación. Norma Oficial Mexicana NOM-030-SSA2-2009, Para la prevención, detección, diagnóstico, tratamiento y control de la hipertensión arterial sistémica. 2009. Available from: http://dof.gob.mx/nota_detalle_popup.php?codigo=5144642
Surgeon General’s Report on Smoking and Health. Smoking and cardiovascular disease. 2015. Available from: https://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/sgr/50th-anniversary/pdfs/fs_smoking_CVD_508.pdf