Hazards of smoking in Egypt

Smoking is a cause of miscarriage in 17 per cent of females and infertility in 13 per cent. Male smokers suffer double the rate of impotency of non-smokers.

In the United States, for example, about 30 per cent of females and 35 per cent of males who are at fertile age smoke.


Egyptian smoking a cigarette

This has led to a 25 per cent reduction in semen for male smokers and raised hormone rates in the pituitary gland (indicated by weak ovulation) for 66 per cent of female smokers compared to non-smokers.

Additionally, chances of becoming pregnant in the first year of marriage are delayed by 54 per cent for smokers over non-smokers, as well as 13 per cent of infertility and 17 per cent of miscarriages being attributed to smoking, the specialists noted.

Dr Hussein Ghanem, a professor of venereology, noted “Smoking leads to ageing effects on the skin, loss of tine and facial wrinkles, which start to appear around the mouth at the age of 30.”

“Nicotine reaches the brain from the lung within 7.5 seconds of taking a puff on a cigarette. The rate of nicotine in the blood is decreased by half following 20 minutes of putting out the cigarette,” Dr el-Essawi remarked. He observed that this explains the smoker’s wish to light up another cigarette shortly after smoking the previous one.

The World Health Organisation has classified smoking as an addiction, because nicotine is one of the cigarette’s main components.

In 2020 it is expected that smoking related mortalities would rise to 10 million people annually including seven million in developing countries, the chest specialist added.

A statistical study on consumers of tobacco in Egypt was conducted collaboratively by the Egyptian Central Agency for Public Mobilisation and Statistics, the Egyptian Ministry of Health and the World Health Organisation. It revealed that the number of smokers in Egypt had reached 13 million smokers with the average age of starting to smoke being 17 in both males and females.

The annual consumption of cigarettes in Egypt is 80 billion cigarettes and the total annual expenditure on smoking has reached LE 5 billion ($480 million) annually.

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