Vascular surgeons get involved with smoking cessation because smoking adversely affects so many aspects of your vascular health. Smoking increases risk of heart attack and stroke, but also increases risk of leg gangrene and blockages in the leg arteries (PAD), wound healing problems, life threatening blood clots (DVT), and complications after surgery. If you need more reasons to quit, smoking is linked to lung cancer, bladder cancer, and erectile dysfunction (ED). Children who are exposed to second hand smoke from parents or grandparents are more likely to have asthma and other breathing problems, sudden infant death syndrome, and ear infections. Fires caused by mishandled cigarettes cost us $6 billion yearly. Smoking a pack per day costs $2400 a year in California. In summary: smoking causes ED, hurts kids, kills forest animals, and causes bankrupcy. None of these things are good.
The strategy that is successful in helping you quit is different for different people. We've collected some suggestions we've heard about that have been successful for others. Hopefully, as you look through this flyer, something will click for you. One of the questions I get asked frequently is what I think of e-cigarettes. My standard answer is that as a crutch to help quit smoking, they are probably OK in the short term. They contain nicotine, but hopefully not all of the other hundreds of chemicals in cigarettes that are carcinogenic. I have had many patients successfully quit smoking using e-cigarettes. It is important to recognize that they have not been formally studied by the FDA for either efficacy or safety, so we do not have a way of regulating the contents. What I definitely do not support is attempts at marketing "vaping" or e-cigarettes to a new audience of as-yet non smokers, through creative advertising or adding candy-like flavorings.
Quitting smoking may be one of the most difficult challenges you've ever attempted. Without a doubt, however, kicking the habit can help prolong your life and improve your quality of life. Please rely on us for support and encouragement with this important step towards improving your health. We are behind you 110%!