New data suggests that one year after quitting smoking, your risks of a smoking-related surgical complication are the same as a non-smoker. The study, published in JAMA Surgery, looked at over 600,000 adult patients between 2008 and 2009, and assessed the effects of current and past smoking (>1 year prior) on postoperative outcomes.
The authors tracked 30-day postoperative mortality, heart attack & stroke, DVT and pulmonary embolism, and respiratory events (pneumonia, unplanned intubation, or ventilator requirement >48 hours).Results: If you were a “current smoker”, your odds of postoperative death were significantly increased, beginning at 10 pack-years of smoking exposure (= 1 pack a day x 10 years), and increasing from there, based on your total exposure.
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