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Editorials |

Up in Smoke: The Fallacy of the Harmless Hookah

Andrew Chan, MB, FCCP; Susan Murin, MD, FCCP
Author and Funding Information

From the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, University of California, Davis, and VA Northern California Healthcare System.

Correspondence to: Susan Murin, MD, FCCP, Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, 4150 V St, Ste 3400, Sacramento, CA 95817; e-mail: susan.murin@ucdmc.ucdavis.edu


Financial/nonfinancial disclosures: The authors have reported to CHEST that no potential conflicts of interest exist with any companies/organizations whose products or services may be discussed in this article.

Reproduction of this article is prohibited without written permission from the American College of Chest Physicians (http://www.chestpubs.org/site/misc/reprints.xhtml).


© 2011 American College of Chest Physicians


Chest. 2011;139(4):737-738. doi:10.1378/chest.10-2985
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Tobacco use, primarily in the form of cigarette smoking, kills an estimated 438,000 people in the United States and approximately 5 million people worldwide annually. Hookah, or water-pipe smoking (WPS), is a form of tobacco use that has been practiced for hundreds of years but has recently seen a dramatic increase in popularity, leading to its description as “an emerging deadly trend.”1 Particularly alarming rates of WPS are occurring among youth, who believe WPS to be a less harmful form of smoking than cigarettes. Evidence of the adverse health effects of WPS is growing, and in this issue of CHEST, Raad et al2 (see pages 764) and Hakim et al3 (see pages 775) separately present findings that add to this evidence and highlight the urgent need for public health interventions to counter the increasing popularity of this trendy and dangerous form of tobacco use.

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smoke ; hookah

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