Heart Month Highlights: Preventive cardiologist chairs the AHA scientific statement on second-hand smoke
Dr. Geetha Raghuveer and Dr. David White, both with the Children's Mercy Preventive Cardiology Clinic, convened an international panel of experts to develop the American Heart Association Scientific Statement on the Cardiovascular Consequences of Childhood Second-hand Tobacco Smoke Exposure: Prevailing Evidence, Burden, and Racial and Socioeconomic Disparities. The statement was published in the September 2016 issue of Circulation.
"Our committee included researchers who have spent a lifetime looking at the cardiovascular risks of second-hand or cigarette smoke," Dr. Raghuveer said. Evidence points early and significant damage to the blood vessels in children who have been exposed to cigarette smoke. It is thus important to educate, counsel and support families to decrease these ill-effects.
Children remain vulnerable as they have little control over their environments, minority children and children from low socio-economic backgrounds are especially affected.
"There is some evidence second-hand smoke is even more damaging than smoking because it is unfiltered," Dr. White added. Dr. Raghuveer serves as Vice Char of the Atherosclerosis, Hypertension, Obesity in the Youth Committee of the AHA whose mission is to advance the science related to recognition and treatment of atherosclerosis, hypertension and obesity in children.
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