Pipe and cigar smokers might be at a high risk for lung disease even though they do not smoke cigarettes and profess not to inhale the smoke, says a new study.
Dr. R. Graham Barr, an assistant professor of medicine and epidemiology at Columbia University Medical Center, and senior author of the study, said that the theory that pipe smokers do not inhale smoke was a myth.
The study involved 3,528 subjects, who were participants in heart disease research. Among them 56 had smoked only pipes or cigars, while 428 smoked pipes or cigars along with cigarettes. Some 1,424 smoked only cigarettes.
Breath tests showed that the lungs of pipe and cigar smokers had higher levels of the nicotine byproduct cotinine than non-smokers. The details are published in the February 15 issue of Annals of Internal Medicine.