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Smoking Lungs
Aug 13, 2008

Hey Kiddo:

I decided to quit smoking again. This time Im quitting with my butch boss (shes gay too) and my mother. At any rate, every time I have a craving, I google smokers lungs and search the images. Therere very scary and as a POZ guy who takes Atripla, Im glad I finally quit.

After looking at these pictures, I was wondering if the lungs will clean the cigarette tar out of the lungs and how long it will take to look like a somewhat normal lung. Im sure there has been irreversible damage done to the organ, especially since Ive been smoking for over ten years. Im 28 now. But I really want to know how the lung begins to repair itself from the toxins and black soot it accumulates. Does it ever?

If I ever end up smoking again, I will take a tour of the county morgue. But I dont think Ill need too. I dont ever want to quit againits a bitch.

Thanks for your help.

Phil

Response from Dr. Frascino

Hey Phil,

Congratulations on making an extremely wise decision to quit smoking. It's perhaps the single most important thing you can do for your health! BRAVO! Lungs do recuperate from smoking, including the damaged parts, but how much recuperation occurs depends on many factors number of years smoking, the number of cigarettes smoked, age, concurrent lung disease, type of damage induced by smoking, etc. The often-quoted statistic is that it takes "about seven years" for lungs to clear the damage, but that's merely an estimate. The important thing is that you quit and your lungs are very happy you did.

My brother died of cigarette-induced lung and brain cancer. It's a hideous and undignified way to die.

Dr. Bob



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