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    Erectile dysfunction added to list of conditions caused by smoking

    Erectile dysfunction has been added the U.S. Surgeon General’s list of diseases caused by smoking.

    Other smoking-related conditions listed in the recently released “The Health Consequences of Smoking—50 Years of Progress: A Report of the Surgeon General” include diabetes, colorectal and liver cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, and age-related macular degeneration.  

    Cigarette smoking kills nearly half a million Americans per year, with an additional 16 million suffering from smoking-related conditions. Smoking costs the U.S. more than $289 billion per year in direct medical care and other economic costs.

    The report also found that approximately 5.6 million American children alive today will die prematurely from smoking-related diseases unless current smoking rates drop.

    Although youth smoking rates declined by half between 1997 and 2011, each day another 3,200 children under 18 years of age smoke their first cigarette, and another 2,100 youths and young adults become daily smokers. Every adult who dies prematurely from smoking is replaced by two youth and young adult smokers, according to the report.

    “Over the last 50 years, tobacco control efforts have saved 8 million lives but the job is far from over. This report provides the impetus to accelerate public health and clinical strategies to drop overall smoking rates to less than 10% in the next decade. Our nation is now at a crossroads, and we must choose to end the tobacco epidemic once and for all,” said Health and Human Services Assistant Secretary for Health Howard K. Koh, MD, MPH.


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    Benjamin P. Saylor
    Benjamin P. Saylor is associate editor of Urology Times, an Advanstar Communications publication.

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