Genetics affect lung disease and smoking behaviour, study finds

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Researchers from the United Kingdom have identified genetic differences that affect the likelihood of whether a person will smoke and the predisposition of heavy smokers and non-smokers to poor lung health

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Smoking cigarettes may increase risk of schizophrenia, study shows

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Smoking may increase the risk of developing schizophrenia, an analysis by a team from King’s College, London has found.

An association between cigarettes and psychotic symptoms has been reported before, but it has been generally assumed that this arises because people with the symptoms take up smoking as a way to relieve distress, counteract the symptoms, or manage the side effects of drugs used to treat them.

Smokers are more likely to quit as smoking prevalence decreases, study shows

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Smokers are more likely to reduce their smoking and try to quit as the proportion of people who smoke in a population decreases, an international study has found, suggesting that current smoking reduction strategies are working and questioning claims that electronic (e) cigarettes provide a harm reduction strategy for smokers who are unable to quit.

Experts call for tobacco industry to pay for smoking cessation work

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The tobacco industry should be forced to pay towards smoking cessation efforts in England as part of a new national tobacco control strategy, a multi-agency report has claimed.

Experts have called for a national annual levy on tobacco companies, fresh targets such as a drop in smoking rates to 5% by 2035, a new five year government tobacco strategy for England, and an increase to the tax escalator on tobacco products to 5% above the level of inflation.

Smoking ban cuts admissions for child respiratory infections

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Banning smoking in public places has cut hospital admissions for childhood respiratory infections in England by 11 000 a year, new research has estimated.

Researchers from the United Kingdom and the Netherlands said that evidence has shown that smoke-free public environments will benefit children’s health but that the exact effect on respiratory tract infections is unclear.

Evidence is insufficient to recommend e-cigarettes for quitting, US committee concludes

There are not enough data on the effectiveness of electronic cigarettes to determine whether the devices can help smokers quit, the US Preventive Services Task Force has concluded.1

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The Task Force, which makes recommendations on the effectiveness of preventive healthcare services such as screening, counselling, and use of drugs, issued its draft evaluation of tobacco smoking cessation in adults and pregnant women on 5 May.

NICE: This month in Eyes on Evidence

nice_nhs_evidenceIssue 69
January 2015

 

Pharmacy-based screening for cardiovascular risk
A systematic review suggests that pharmacy-based screening for cardiovascular risk factors may be possible. However, many people do not act on the advice to visit their GP, and the effect of screening on new diagnoses has not been robustly shown.

Self-management of hypertension in people at high risk of cardiovascular events
An open-label randomised controlled trial finds that people with hypertension who self-monitor their blood pressure and up-titrate their antihypertensive medication experience a greater reduction in systolic blood pressure than people who manage hypertension with usual care.

Mental health after stopping smoking
A meta-analysis finds that stopping smoking is associated with reductions in anxiety, depression and stress, and improvements in quality of life and mood.

Alpha-blockers for expulsion of ureteral stones
A Cochrane review reports that alpha-blockers are more effective at expelling ureteral stones less than 10 mm in diameter than standard therapy or calcium channel blockers.

Haemoglobin thresholds for blood transfusion
Two meta-analyses report that restricting transfusion of red blood cells to people with a haemoglobin level of either less than 7.0 g/dl or 6.4 g/dl to 9.7 g/dl reduces mortality and serious infection, but does not significantly affect the overall risk of infection.

Evidence Updates
NICE has recently published Evidence Updates on:

  • Spasticity in children and young people with non-progressive brain disorders
  • Ectopic pregnancy and miscarriage
  • Hyperphosphataemia in chronic kidney disease