Anti-smoking hospital programmes successful: Indian American expert

October 14th, 2008 - 3:36 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, Oct 14 (IANS) Hospital-based anti-smoking programmes, along with referrals for cardiac rehabilitation, seem to help patients quit smoking after a heart attack, according to a study co-authored by Indian American cardiologist Susmita Parashar. “The findings are important because cardiac rehabilitation and hospital-based smoking cessation programmes appear to be under-utilised in current clinical practice and should be potentially considered as a structural measure of health care quality for patients with heart attack,” Parashar, from the Emory University School of Medicine, said.

Emory University researchers studied 639 patients who smoked at the time of their hospitalisation after heart attack. Six months later, 297 of the patients - about 47 percent of them - had quit smoking.

The odds of quitting were greater among patients who received discharge recommendations for cardiac rehabilitation and those who were treated at a facility offering an inpatient smoking cessation program. However, individual counselling was not associated with quit rates.

Parashar said the study shows that patients recovering from a heart attack are more likely to quit smoking if they are referred to a cardiac rehabilitation programme or if a hospital-based smoking cessation programme is available to them.

The report appeared in the October issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA and Archives journals.

Parashar graduated from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi, in 1996. She attended State University of New York, Syracuse for her internal medicine internship from 1997 to 1998. After completing her residency at Medical College of Georgia, Augusta in 2000, she joined the general internal medicine department at Emory University as an academic faculty member.

In 2003, she became an assistant professor of medicine at Emory. She completed her Master of Public Health and Master of Science from Emory in 2005.

Her research interests include women and heart disease, racial and sex disparities in heart disease, depression and coronary heart disease and role of inflammation and oxidation in outcome of coronary heart disease.

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