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July 29, 2014

CDC Campaign Wants HIV-Positive Smokers to Quit

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has combined the efforts of its tobacco and HIV divisions to focus on getting HIV-positive smokers to quit, according to a new release from the government organization.

The CDC’s existing “Tips From Former Smokers” campaign will now help spread the news about the synergistic bad effects of smoking cigarettes while living with HIV. The new ads feature Brian, an HIV-positive gay man who suffered a stroke because of complications from smoking.

The campaign also highlights several recent studies showing that HIV-related inflammation already puts people at risk for many of the same health problems as smoking, such as heart disease, cancer and stroke. So, when a person has HIV and also puffs cigarettes, these negative effects are magnified far beyond the risks of an HIV-negative person who smokes. Research also shows that HIV-positive smokers may be more likely to develop HIV-related infections such as thrush and pneumocystis pneumonia (PCP).

The CDC is currently hosting a series of webinars on the topic with grantees from both its HIV and tobacco departments. The organization is also running a series of print and digital ads featuring Brian and his new educational tips video, which you can watch here. In addition, the American Academy of HIV Medicine will be publishing articles and informational posters related to the campaign.

Estimates from 2009 suggest that 42 percent of HIV-positive people smoke, compared with about 20 percent of the general U.S. population. The CDC urges anyone interested in quitting to talk to their doctors or call the 1-800-QUITNOW helpline, which was recently re-vamped for both LGBT and HIV cultural competency.

Search: CDC, smoking, HIV, tips from former smokers, quit

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  comments 1 - 3 (of 3 total)    

David G Ostrow, Chicago, 2014-08-06 02:30:06
Longitudinal studies of both HIV-infected and uninfected MSM BOTH smoke cigarettes at approximately two times the rate of age and SES matched general population male samples. The observation at the end of this abstract that HIV+ men have high rates of cigarette use has nothing to do with HIV status and is more likely due to differing community norms and attitudes. Anecdotal reports of deaths among HIV+ cigarette users are not backed-up by epidem data & shouldn't be basis of public health policy

Rory, Orillia, 2014-07-31 15:08:04
While I fully understand the health implications of smoking - both with or without having HIV, I have always found that most of the programs, adverts and susstation aids are always geared to those who want to quit. For me, I enjoy smoking. I definitely don't enjoy how shitty I feel after a cigarette but I am having problems WANTING to quit. Its my fiddle stick! And no, carrots and toothpicks aren't working. I like exhailing smoke, and no, the vaporizer isn't doing it for me. How to want to quit?

Curious, Miami, 2014-07-29 21:49:50
Why exactly was it important to note that Brian is a gay man? Is it to make him more relatable for what the CDC feels is the majority of the population of which it is trying to address? From my perspective, sexual preference is irrelevant in this case- if you are HIV positive, you should not smoke due to health concerns and the potential complications which may develop. Sexuality is not a factor here.

comments 1 - 3 (of 3 total)    

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