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Smoking and health Professor Martin Jarvis Department of Epidemiology & Public Health.

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Presentation on theme: "Smoking and health Professor Martin Jarvis Department of Epidemiology & Public Health."— Presentation transcript:

1 Smoking and health Professor Martin Jarvis Department of Epidemiology & Public Health

2 Smoking as nicotine dependence Nicotine the driving force As with other drugs, complex interplay between pharmacology, learning mechanisms, social and economic influences in determining patterns of use

3 The major health consequences of smoking Cancer –lung –mouth, larynx, throat, oesophagus –bladder, cervix, kidney, pancreas COPD Coronary heart disease Stroke Peripheral vascular disease Pregnancy and birth complications

4 Mortality associated with smoking At least 320 deaths every day from smoking in the UK, 120,000 per year 1/5 all deaths across all ages 1/4 all deaths in age group years 1 in 2 lifetime risk for smokers 7.5 years average loss of life expectancy Over half of the difference in risk of death in middle age between professional and unskilled men 4 million deaths worldwide

5 Year Cumulative deaths from tobacco (millions) Scenarios for future deaths from tobacco Trend Source: Peto et al

6 Smoking is highly addictive At least 70% of smokers want to give up Less than half succeed before age 65 40% of heart attack smokers relapse while still in hospital within 2 days of intensive care 50% of patients with laryngectomies try smoking again 50% of patients with lung removed for lung cancer smoke again More than half of heroin and cocaine users and alcoholics rate smoking harder to quit

7 Addiction

8 Starting point - the cigarette The cigarette should be conceived not as a product but as a package. The product is nicotine. Think of the cigarette pack as a storage container for a days supply of nicotine….Think of the cigarette as the dispenser for a dose unit of nicotine…..Smoke is beyond question the most optimised vehicle of nicotine and the cigarette the most optimised dispenser of smoke. William Dunn, Philip Morris, 1972

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10 Nicotine Addiction in Britain Royal College of Physicians Feb 2000 Nicotine delivered rapidly to the brain in cigarette smoke should be recognised as a powerfully addictive drug on a par with heroin and cocaine, and tobacco products should be recognised as nicotine delivery systems. Central conclusion: smoking is best understood as nicotine seeking behaviour

11 Rating IV nicotine and cocaine: Jones et al (1999) Compared 3 doses of cocaine and nicotine given IV double-blind + saline placebo Nicotine high and rush rated stronger than cocaine, also jittery Nicotine frequently misidentified as cocaine, and, at highest dose, an opiate

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15 Nicotine as a drug of dependence Blood nicotine from cigarettes, snuff (oral and nasal) and cigars very similar IV nicotine suppresses smoking Nicotine intakes from different brands of cigarette very similar

16 Nicotine as a drug of dependence Nicotine withdrawal syndrome Effect of nicotine replacement on successful quitting

17 Self-assertion... To account for the fact that the beginning smoker will tolerate the unpleasantness we must invoke a psychosocial motive. Smoking a cigarette for the beginner is a symbolic act. The smoker is telling his world, 'This is the kind of person I am.' Surely there are variants of this theme, 'I am no longer my mother's child,' 'I am tough,' 'I am not a square.' Whatever the individual intent, the act of smoking remains a symbolic declaration of personal identity... Philip Morris (Bates no )

18 ... and addiction... As the force from the psychosocial symbolism subsides, the pharmacological effect takes over to sustain the habit... Philip Morris 1969 document (Bates no )

19 Addiction -

20 Factors favouring study of smoking as compared with other drug taking behaviours High prevalence Legal Little stigma, so self-reports largely accurate Unlike alcohol, excellent biomarker of intake available

21 Cotinine as a biomarker of nicotine intake Main nicotine metabolite (70-80% converted) Half-life hours Measurable in saliva, blood or urine Quantitative measure of nicotine intake: 10ng/ml cotinine in blood ~ 1mg nicotine daily

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28 Disadvantage and Smoking A whole range of indicators of disadvantage predict who smokes Cigarette smoking prevalence tightly linked to deprivation, mainly because of low rates of quitting in disadvantaged groups

29 Indicators of socio-economic status Occupational class Educational level Housing tenure Car ownership Unemployment Living in crowded accommodation Single parenthood Divorced or separated

30 Disadvantage and smoking Poor people are: –More likely to take up smoking –Less likely to quit –More heavily exposed to other peoples smoke –Become more nicotine dependent –Much more likely to die prematurely from smoking

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34 Some implications of nicotine addiction for cessation and harm reduction Ineffective cutting down switching to cigars or a pipe switching to low tar Effective Nicotine replacement products

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37 One year success rates by intensity of intervention: Unaided quit attempt …………………...…..….1-2% Brief GP advice ……………………………...……5% Brief GP advice + NRT ……………………….…10% Intensive clinic support ………………………...15% Intensive clinic support + NRT…………… %

38 Year Cumulative deaths from tobacco (millions) Scenarios for future deaths from tobacco Trend Source: Peto et al

39 Year Cumulative deaths from tobacco (millions) Scenarios for future deaths from tobacco If smoking uptake halves by 2020 Trend Source: Peto et al

40 Year Cumulative deaths from tobacco (millions) Scenarios for future deaths from tobacco If adult smoking halves by 2020 If smoking uptake halves by 2020 Trend Source: Peto et al

41 Conclusions Nicotines legal status and lack of adverse effects on performance have hampered recognition of its status as a drug of dependence Nicotine is pharmacologically a hard drug, on a par with heroin and cocaine Cigarette smoking is by far the biggest problem of drug dependence in the UK


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