Quitting Smoking after a Heart Attack lowers Angina Risk and ups Well-being

March 21, 2016

A new study has shown that patients who continue to smoke after a heart attack are more likely to suffer from angina (chest pain) and to experience mental and physical health problems which negatively impacts their quality of life when compared to those that stop smoking.

These findings “may help address concerns patients have that smoking cessation may not really make a difference in how they feel or could have detrimental effects on their mental health” says Lead researcher, Dr Donna M Buchanan (Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute, Kansas, MO).

Smokers should be motivated to stop smoking after a heart attack to the lower risk of having a repeat heart attack, or dying earlier, and the reward of a better quality of life.

Patients recovering from a heart attack have very little information about the effect of smoking cessation on angina and quality of life. Smokers may hold the opinion that living well is more important than living long but these new findings seem to show that quitting smoking after a heart attack not only lowers the risk of dying earlier but also improves the quality of life in those extra years.

[This study was based on data from two large multi-centre registries: The PREMIER & TRIUMPH. Reference: Buchanan DM, Arnold SV, Gosch KL, et al. Association of smoking status with angina and health-related quality of life after acute myocardial infarction.Circ Cardiovasc Qual Outcomes 2014; DOI:10.1161/CIRCOUTCOMES.114.001545.]

Stopping smoking may not be easy however research shows that the best way to stop smoking is through a stop smoking programme which uses a combination of support, behaviour change techniques and smoking cessation medication (for example nicotine replacement therapy).

The GoSmokeFree smoking cessation programme combines support, behaviour change techniques and medication to triple your chances of successfully quitting smoking and is available in participating pharmacies in South Africa.

Click here for more information on the GoSmokeFree service.

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