Canada: 100 Babies Die Each Year due to Maternal Smoking [01/14-4]
Excerpts from: Smoking continues to exact a deadly toll 100 babies die each year due to maternal smoking, new Health Canada data show
ANDRÉ PICARD The Globe and Mail [01/14/04]
The report lists, in clinical detail, 22 adult and four pediatric diseases that are smoking-related, along with detailed mortality data.
Among the dead were 55 boys and 41 girls under the age of 1 who died of sudden infant death syndrome, low birth weight and respiratory conditions caused principally by maternal smoking. (Not all SIDS deaths are related to smoking.)
"This is really a tragedy because these kids had no chance," Murray Kaiserman, director of tobacco control research at Health Canada, said in an interview.
The report says that 46,378 Canadian smokers over the age of 35 died as a result of their addiction. "These are mostly people who started smoking 20 years ago or more, and the past is catching up with them," Dr. Kaiserman said. The causes of death included:
Cancers: 18,347, the bulk of which were lung cancer;
Cardiovascular diseases: 17,413, with ischemic heart disease accounting for half the cases;
Respiratory diseases: 10,618, the majority of which were due to chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder. In addition to the deaths caused directly by smoking, Health Canada found there were 96 pediatric deaths and 1,107 adult deaths due to secondhand smoke.
government researchers, greatly exaggerate "smoking attributable" deaths because they fail to account for the other risk factors of smokers, such as diet, obesity, and socio-economic status.
Internationally, smoking causes about 10,000 deaths daily, according to the World Health Organization. That number is expected to rise to 27,500 deaths a day by the year 2020.
About 100 million people died of smoking-related causes in the 20th century.
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