He said that a number of studies have demonstrated that when communities adopt comprehensive smoking bans, substantial reductions in heart attacks follow.
"Adopting a national comprehensive smoking ban would prevent cardiovascular events, reduce death and disability due to cardiovascular disease, and greatly improve the cardiovascular health of this nation," Fonarow said.
Another expert agreed, and said that bans' benefits extend to nonsmokers as well by reducing secondhand smoke.
"This is another important piece of evidence that smoke-free laws protect health," said Matthew L. Myers, president of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids said. "It shows why it is critical that every state pass a comprehensive smoke-free law that protects all workers and applies to all workplaces and public places."
For more information on secondhand smoke, visit the U.S. National Library of Medicine.
SOURCES: Mouaz Al-Mallah, M.D., co-director, Cardiac Imaging Research, Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit; Gregg C. Fonarow, M.D., professor, medicine, and director, Ahmanson-UCLA Cardiomyopathy Center, University of California, Los Angeles; Matthew L. Myers, President , Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids; May 20, 2010, presentation, American Heart Association's annual Quality of Care and Outcomes Research conference, Washington, D.C.
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