Washington, Feb 12 : Quitting smoking can significantly decrease the number of acute coronary events such as heart attack in adults, says a new study.
A team of researchers in Rome have found that the number of acute coronary events dropped in adults after smoking was banned in public places in Italy.
They compared the rate of acute coronary events from 2000 to 2004 to those occurring in 2005 after the ban was enforce and divided the study into three age groups 35-64, 65-74 and 75-84 years.
The findings revealed that acute coronary events in persons 35 to 64 years reduced by 11.2 percent while those between 65 to 74 years saw a 7.9 percent reduction.
Dr Francesco Forastiere, co-author of the study and head of the Environmental and Occupational Epidemiology Unit, Department of Epidemiology, Rome E. Health Authority, Italy, side that the ban in Italy is having a real protective effect on population health.
"Smoking bans in all public and workplaces result in an important reduction of acute coronary events," he said.
The ban resulted in a significant reduction in acute coronary events in the two younger age groups.
"The smoking ban has a greater effect on those of working age and those who spend a lot of their time in public places," said Giulia Cesaroni, M.Sc., senior researcher at the Department of Epidemiology, Rome, Italy.
The researchers believe that the health benefits in this study were likely the result of a significant reduction in exposure to passive smoking. In addition, a smoking-free environment makes it easier for smokers to stop smoking.
The report appears in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.