Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Racial Discrepancies in Smoking-Related Morbidity

It was estimated that approximately 443,000 deaths in the United States happen each year because of smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke. All these deaths cost the nation $97 billion on lost productivity and $96 billion in health-care costs. Only in Missouri smoking lead to 9,600 deaths during 2000-2004. In order to restrict the dangerous health consequences of smoking, states decided to introduce comprehensive tobacco cessation programs which would detect inequalities among population and target those incommensurable affected by secondhand smoke.

The given report also compares the national health burden of smoking among whites and Afro-Americans in Missouri by evaluating the number of smoking related deaths in these population groups within 2003-2007. The data show that the average annual smoking related morbidity level in the state constituted 18% higher for Afro-Americans than for whites. The relative difference in smoking related morbidity levels between Afro-Americans and whites was higher for men – 28% than women 11%. For Missouri, these findings are an important criterion for estimating the success of tobacco control programs in lowering the consequences of tobacco use.

During 2003-2007, smoking lead to 9,377 deaths - 8,400 among whites and 853 among Afro-Americans. For instance in Missouri were registered 18% (51,856) of deaths among persons aged 35. Smoking caused 32% of deaths from cancer, 15% circulatory deaths, and 46 % of all respiratory deaths in Missouri within this time. For both Afro-Americans and whites, the major cause of smoking related deaths was cancer.

However smoking related mortality for Afro-Americans constituted only 9% of the total number of deaths, the same rate for Afro-Americans in Missouri was 18% higher than for whites. Also was registered a significant discrepancy, 28% of death among black men and 11% among Afro-American women.

The smoking – related years of potential life lost (YPLL) level for Afro-Americans also constituted 18%, this is higher than for whites and differed most for men. Afro-American men had an YPLL rate 25% higher than white men, and the same was for women.

Differences in smoking-related morbidity exist all over the world and happen because of variations in population demographics and smoking. Also differences in tobacco cessation programs, policies and tobacco industry occur in this field. Racial and ethnic discrepancies in smoking-related mortality are also associated with social status, levels of cigarette smoking and not the least but the last the differences in genetic factors.

Essential racial discrepancies in smoking-related morbidity existed in Missouri during 2003—2007, with a number of 52 per 100,000 more Afro-American dying each year from smoking.