An Analysis of How Smoking Affects Assessments for the Cardiovascular and Autonomic Functioning: A Tertiary Care Study.
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Introduction: Smoking is a significant risk factor for CVD, however it is unclear how smoking affects tests of cardiovascular and autonomic functioning at tertiary care facilities.
Methods: In a tertiary care context, this study looked at the relationship between smoking and tests of cardiovascular and autonomic functioning. 200 people took part in the study, 100 of whom were smokers and 100 were not. Blood pressure, heart rate, cholesterol levels, and autonomic function were assessed in the subjects.
Results: Smokers had a higher mean BMI than non-smokers (p <0.05). Other baseline characteristics were similar between groups. Smokers had greater systolic, diastolic, and heart rates than non-smokers (p<0.05). Smokers had significantly higher HDL and LDL cholesterol than non-smokers (p < 0.05). Other comparisons between the groups indicated no changes. After correcting for potential confounders, smokers had higher risks of elevated SBP (OR=2.34, 95% CI: 1.21-4.54), DBP, and HR than non-smokers. Smokers had a higher risk of low HDL cholesterol (OR=2.64, 95% CI: 1.49-4.67) and high LDL cholesterol (OR=2.49).
Conclusion: Smoking causes problems with the heart and the autonomic nervous system. There may be a dose-dependent relationship between smoking's detrimental effects on cardiovascular and autonomic function, with heavier smokers reporting more severe impairments. To lower the risk of CVD and other harmful cardiovascular events, healthcare practitioners should encourage smokers to quit.
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