Several types of “Smoker’s Paradoxes”, (cases where smoking appears to have specific beneficial effects), have been observed. This is in addition to the numerous documented negative health effects of smoking.
These effects should not be confused with altered mortality rate in “quitting ill”. Patients who quit smoking have a temporary increase in mortality from lung cancer compared to smokers, but this is due to the rate of quitting smoking after receiving the diagnosis of lung cancer itself.
Often the actual mechanism remains undetermined.
- Digestive system
- Cardiovascular system
- breast cancer among women carrying the very high risk BRCA gene
- Smoking can also reduce rates of uterine fibroids. This may be due to estrogen inhibition, as opposed to general inhibition of inflammation.
- The risk of endometriosis has been reported to be reduced in smokers.
- Smoking has been consistently found to be a protective factor on epidemiological studies for Parkinson’s disease. The basis for such effect is not known but possibilities include an effect ofnicotine as dopamine stimulant.
- The majority (80% in Australia as of 2001, 85% in the US as of 2007) of schizophrenics smoke, apparently to self-medicate. Nicotine appears to be an effective antipsychotic, and work is underway to develop antipsychotic drugs based on nicotine without the ill effects of smoking or of nicotine itself.
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- Daniel W. Cramer, Emery Wilson, Robert J. Stillman, Merle J. Berger, Serge Belisle, Isaac Schiff, Bruce Albrecht, Mark Gibson, Bruce V. Stadel, Stephen C. Schoenbaum (April 1986). “The Relation of Endometriosis to Menstrual Characteristics, Smoking, and Exercise”. JAMA1986;255(14):1904-1908 255 (14): 1904–8. doi:10.1001/jama.1986.03370140102032.PMID 3951117.
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