ASH Daily News for 25 June 2019



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UK

  • Study: Young women smokers at much higher risk of deadly heart attack
  • Huge haul of illicit cigarettes seized in Bristol

International

  • Cannes Lions Festival criticised for placing Philip Morris on ‘Good Track’ whilst they launch cigarette campaigns in Indonesia

UK

Study: Young women smokers at much higher risk of deadly heart attack

While smoking increases the likelihood of heart attack in both men and women of all ages, it has a greater effect in younger women, especially those under 50, a new study suggests.

For women smokers ages 18 to 49, the risk of a deadly type of heart attack was more than 13 times higher than it was for their non-smoking counterparts, researchers reported in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. “This study sheds new light on the risk impact that smoking has in provoking major heart attacks, especially in younger and female smokers,” said coauthor Dr. Ever Grech, an interventional cardiologist at the South Yorkshire Cardiothoracic Center at the Northern General Hospital in Sheffield.

Grech and his colleagues studied five years of data on patients who came to their hospital with a ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), a type of heart attack which results from a complete blockage of a major coronary artery. Grech and his colleagues compared the 3,343 STEMI patients with data on the entire population served by the South Yorkshire Cardiothoracic Centre using 3 years of information gathered on residents aged 18 or older by the Integrated Household Survey from the Office for National Statistics.

Analysis showed smoking was associated with a significantly greater increase in the STEMI risk for women than men. Compared to their non-smoking counterparts, female smokers were 6.62 times more likely to have a major heart attack, while male smokers were 4.40 times more likely to have a major heart attack. Younger women smokers, those under age 50, saw the highest increase in risk. They were 13.22 times more likely to experience a major heart attack compared to their nonsmoking counterparts. Male smokers in the same age group were 8.6 times more likely to experience a STEMI compared to nonsmoking counterparts.

Source: Reuters, 24 June 2019

Journal of the American College of Cardiology – Differential Risk of ST-Segment Elevation Myocardial Infarction in Male and Female Smokers

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Huge haul of illicit cigarettes seized in Bristol

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has seized around 500,000 suspected illicit cigarettes and 700kg of hand-rolling tobacco in Bristol.

HMRC officers searched four residential addresses and two business premises on 12th June as part of an investigation into cigarette and tobacco smuggling. On 21st June, a spokesperson for HMRC reported that £80,000 in cash was also seized.

8 people were arrested on suspicion of fraudulently evading excise duty and money laundering.

Source: Bristol Live, 22 June 2019

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International

Cannes Lions Festival criticised for placing Philip Morris on ‘Good Track’ whilst they launch cigarette campaigns in Indonesia

Philip Morris International’s (PMI) involvement in Cannes Lions’ ‘Good Track’ has been further criticised after it emerged the tobacco company has launched new cigarette brands and run new advertisement campaigns in Indonesia and Israel.

PMI has invested heavily in marketing a ‘smokefree world’, in which the tobacco company says it wants tobacco smokers to transition to its heated tobacco product iQOS, which it claims is less harmful. However, this marketing strategy has run alongside other campaigns promoting cigarettes internationally.

Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids (CTFK) found that, in Israel, PMI slashed prices of Marlboro cigarettes and is marketing the brand with the ‘You Decide’ campaign. Advertisements for “Music Limited Edition” Marlboros feature three cigarette packs designed to look like boombox speakers with the tagline “What’s your sound? You decide”. Subsequent ads featured the slogan “Sound up. Price down.”

Further, in Indonesia CTFK found PMI’s ‘You Decide’ campaign for Marlboro being featured on billboards, including on the popular tourist island of Bali. The billboards pose the question “What’s next to discover? You decide”. The new ads follow PMI’s recent launch of a new cigarette brand in Indonesia, called Philip Morris Bold. The brand launch included large billboards and television ads.

Source: PR Week, 21 June 2019

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