Secondhand smoke kills 600,000 worldwide annually
November 26th, 2010
09:08 AM ET

Secondhand smoke kills 600,000 worldwide annually

1 in 100 people around the world die from secondhand smoke each year, a new study reveals, and nearly two-thirds of the deaths occur in children.

Health officials have known that more than 1 billion people around the world smoke and 5 million people die each year from tobacco-related illness, according to the World Health Organization.  That's about one person dying every six seconds.

But just how many people are sickened by secondhand smoke has been less clear, which led researchers to try to investigate how big the problem is. Based on 2004 data gathered from 192 countries, researchers estimate "as many as 40 percent of children, 35 percent of women, and 33 percent of men are regularly exposed to secondhand smoke indoors," according to a WHO study published in the British medical journal The Lancet.

"Tobacco use is one of the biggest public health threats the world has ever faced," says the WHO.  More than 80 percent of the more than 1 billion smokers worldwide live in low- and middle-income countries, where the burden of tobacco-related illness and death is heaviest. The study authors estimate that 165,000 children under the age of 5 die each year from lower respiratory infections caused by second-hand smoke – and most of these deaths occur in Africa and south Asia.

Just two months ago, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  released a report that found more than half of children in the United States, between ages 3 and 11 show signs in their blood of exposure to secondhand smoke.  Previous studies have found that even extremely low levels of exposure to cigarette smoke produced detectable abnormal genetic activity in these cells.

The more than 1 billion smokers are exposing billions of non-smokers to one of the top indoor pollutants according to the WHO. Researchers believe more needs to be done to create complete smoke-free indoor environments at work, in public places and on public transportation. Jonathan Samet and Heather Wipfli, two leading public health experts from the University of Southern California say their research from 31 countries found  that 88 percent of parents who smoked did so at home and that over 80 percent smoked near their children. In an accompanying commentary, they emphasize the need for smoke-free homes, which can help  lower the number of people sickened and dying from someone else's smoke.

Wipfli and Samet say educating and empowering women can make a big difference is protecting children and non-smoking adults from the deadly effects of secondhand smoke. "Few sources of indoor air pollution can be completely eliminated.   However, smoking indoors can be eliminated," they say.

soundoff (2,638 Responses)
  1. walmart pharmacy near me


    June 16, 2021 at 19:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. tj maxx near me

    Right here is the right blog for everyone who hopes to find out about this topic. You understand so much its almost hard to argue with you (not that I really will need toÖHaHa). You definitely put a new spin on a subject which has been discussed for years. Great stuff, just wonderful!


    June 16, 2021 at 19:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. suntrust near me


    June 16, 2021 at 19:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. medical supply store near me


    June 16, 2021 at 21:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. houses for sale near me

    You have made some good points there. I looked on the net for more information about the issue and found most people will go along with your views on this web site.


    June 16, 2021 at 23:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. RV Repair

    Way cool! Some extremely valid points! I appreciate you penning this write-up and also the rest of the website is extremely good.


    June 16, 2021 at 23:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Sprinter Repair Shops Near Me


    June 17, 2021 at 02:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Camper Repair Shop Near Me

    Iím impressed, I have to admit. Rarely do I come across a blog thatís equally educative and engaging, and without a doubt, you've hit the nail on the head. The problem is something that not enough men and women are speaking intelligently about. I am very happy that I came across this during my hunt for something regarding this.


    June 17, 2021 at 03:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Camper Repair Near Me

    I absolutely love your blog.. Very nice colors & theme. Did you build this site yourself? Please reply back as Iím attempting to create my own website and want to find out where you got this from or exactly what the theme is called. Thanks!


    June 17, 2021 at 03:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. for rent near me


    June 17, 2021 at 03:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. lumber yards near me

    I was able to find good advice from your blog posts.


    June 17, 2021 at 03:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. RV Repair Near My Location

    An impressive share! I've just forwarded this onto a friend who was conducting a little homework on this. And he in fact ordered me lunch because I stumbled upon it for him... lol. So let me reword this.... Thanks for the meal!! But yeah, thanx for spending some time to discuss this subject here on your internet site.


    June 17, 2021 at 04:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. RV Repair Near Me Now


    June 17, 2021 at 05:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Nearest RV Repair

    Aw, this was a really good post. Taking the time and actual effort to create a good articleÖ but what can I sayÖ I put things off a lot and don't seem to get anything done.


    June 17, 2021 at 05:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. RV Repair California

    Can I simply just say what a relief to find somebody who actually understands what they're discussing on the net. You definitely know how to bring a problem to light and make it important. A lot more people must check this out and understand this side of the story. I was surprised you're not more popular given that you surely possess the gift.


    June 17, 2021 at 06:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Nearby RV Repairs


    June 17, 2021 at 06:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Nearby RV Repair

    This site was... how do you say it? Relevant!! Finally I have found something that helped me. Cheers!


    June 17, 2021 at 06:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. RV Repair Near Me


    June 17, 2021 at 08:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. Sprinter Repair Near Me

    Nice post. I learn something totally new and challenging on sites I stumbleupon every day. It's always helpful to read content from other writers and use something from other sites.


    June 17, 2021 at 09:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. printing services near me

    There is definately a lot to know about this issue. I like all the points you made.


    June 17, 2021 at 09:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Sprinter Repair Near Me

    Hi there! I just want to offer you a huge thumbs up for your excellent info you have here on this post. I am returning to your web site for more soon.


    June 17, 2021 at 10:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. RV Repair Huntington Beach


    June 17, 2021 at 10:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. RV Repair Shop Near Me

    Oh my goodness! Incredible article dude! Thanks, However I am experiencing troubles with your RSS. I donít know why I am unable to subscribe to it. Is there anyone else getting the same RSS issues? Anybody who knows the answer can you kindly respond? Thanx!!


    June 17, 2021 at 10:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Nearby RV Repairs

    Your style is unique compared to other folks I have read stuff from. Many thanks for posting when you have the opportunity, Guess I'll just bookmark this site.


    June 17, 2021 at 12:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. chinese near me

    Your style is so unique in comparison to other folks I've read stuff from. Many thanks for posting when you've got the opportunity, Guess I will just bookmark this web site.


    June 17, 2021 at 12:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. strip clubs near me

    Howdy, I do think your website might be having web browser compatibility issues. Whenever I look at your web site in Safari, it looks fine however, if opening in Internet Explorer, it has some overlapping issues. I merely wanted to provide you with a quick heads up! Aside from that, fantastic website!


    June 17, 2021 at 12:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. ups drop box near me

    Iím amazed, I have to admit. Rarely do I encounter a blog thatís both educative and interesting, and without a doubt, you have hit the nail on the head. The problem is an issue that not enough men and women are speaking intelligently about. Now i'm very happy that I came across this during my hunt for something concerning this.


    June 17, 2021 at 12:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. skateparks near me


    June 17, 2021 at 16:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. tree service near me


    June 17, 2021 at 17:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. plumbing supply near me


    June 17, 2021 at 17:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. gyros near me


    June 17, 2021 at 18:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. cheapest gas near me

    Pretty! This has been an extremely wonderful article. Many thanks for supplying this info.


    June 17, 2021 at 19:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. checkers near me

    I enjoy reading a post that can make people think. Also, thank you for permitting me to comment!


    June 17, 2021 at 19:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. computer stores near me


    June 17, 2021 at 19:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. IKimediumb#randeom[a..z]z

    followers book summary community first credit union trufant michigan , ivermectin 3mg tablets sale buy ivermectin for humans community first credit union knoxville iowa. community resource credit union culture area . community bible church fort smith ar buy ivermectin , community aid.org/careers planning vs process community action council frederick md community definition science example spain 43830a2 , planning process flowchart , social blade youtube .

    June 17, 2021 at 19:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. dump near me


    June 17, 2021 at 19:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. breakfast places near me

    Great site you have got here.. Itís difficult to find excellent writing like yours these days. I honestly appreciate people like you! Take care!!


    June 17, 2021 at 20:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. bars open near me


    June 17, 2021 at 21:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. ross near me


    June 17, 2021 at 21:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. wells fargo near me


    June 17, 2021 at 21:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. urgent care near me

    Good site you have got here.. Itís difficult to find high quality writing like yours these days. I truly appreciate people like you! Take care!!


    June 17, 2021 at 23:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. print photos near me

    Very good information. Lucky me I discovered your website by accident (stumbleupon). I have saved it for later!


    June 17, 2021 at 23:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. mcdonald's near me

    Way cool! Some very valid points! I appreciate you penning this post and also the rest of the site is really good.


    June 18, 2021 at 00:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. tractor supply near me

    Right here is the perfect website for everyone who hopes to find out about this topic. You understand so much its almost hard to argue with you (not that I actually will need toÖHaHa). You certainly put a new spin on a subject that has been written about for many years. Great stuff, just great!


    June 18, 2021 at 00:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. flea market near me

    I was able to find good info from your content.


    June 18, 2021 at 01:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. website

    I want to express my appreciation to the writer just for bailing me out of this type of setting. After looking through the world wide web and getting views that were not beneficial, I assumed my entire life was well over. Existing without the presence of solutions to the difficulties you have solved all through your entire write-up is a crucial case, and ones that might have negatively damaged my entire career if I hadn't come across your blog. Your own personal mastery and kindness in dealing with all areas was tremendous. I don't know what I would've done if I had not discovered such a step like this. I can now look forward to my future. Thanks for your time very much for this reliable and results-oriented help. I will not hesitate to refer your web site to anyone who requires assistance about this issue.


    June 18, 2021 at 01:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. painters near me


    June 18, 2021 at 02:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. rapid testing near me

    I needed to thank you for this wonderful read!! I certainly loved every little bit of it. I have got you book marked to look at new things you postÖ


    June 18, 2021 at 03:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. cheap gas near me


    June 18, 2021 at 03:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. beauty supply near me

    Everything is very open with a really clear clarification of the issues. It was definitely informative. Your site is very useful. Thanks for sharing!


    June 18, 2021 at 04:08 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49

Leave a Reply to huey1


CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.