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smoking and HIV
Sep 28, 2006

I recently read in a response to a posted letter that you said it was important for people with HIV to quit smoking. Isn't this advisable of people in general and not just relegated to people with HIV, or is there something unique for HIV positive people that makes it doubly important that they should quit. I need to quit smoking and it's been such a challenge. Perhaps your advice would take the dissidence out of my cognitive mind. signed: Cognitive Dissident

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hello,

Is it advisable for everyone to quit smoking? Absofrickinlutely. Smoking will indeed kill you. Smoking-induced emphysema, lung cancer, heart attack, stroke . . . take your pick, they are all uncomfortable and undignified ways to depart this planet. And they are all avoidable if you avoid the butts.

What about adding HIV into the equation? Well, that just raises the stakes even higher. Smoking predisposes you to respiratory tract infections sinusitis, bronchitis, pneumonia, etc. These, in turn, can send your HIV viral load up and worsen your HIV disease process.

Cognitive Dissident, I strongly suggest you stop smoking and find something more enjoyable to do with your hands and mouth. I've got some ideas just in case you can't come up with any.

Stay well.

Dr. Bob



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