Newsbriefs from the journal Chest, April 2006

SNORING HIGHEST AMONG MIDDLE-AGED WOMEN

A new study finds that habitual snoring in women is strongly tied to body mass index (BMI) and age, with snoring prevalence reaching its peak in women ages 50 to 59. Swedish researchers surveyed 6,817 women regarding snoring habits and potential risk factors for snoring, including BMI, smoking habits, physical activity, alcohol and medication use, and menopausal and hormonal status. The total prevalence for snoring was 7.6 percent, with the highest prevalence among women ages 50 to 59 (14 percent) and the lowest prevalence among women under age 40 and over age 80. Habitual snoring was found to increase with a higher BMI. Alcohol dependence was associated with snoring in lean women, while physical inactivity was associated with snoring in women with a high BMI. Overall, snorers were significantly older, had a higher mean BMI, had higher neck and waist circumferences, were more often smokers, and were less physically active than non-snorers. The study appears in the April issue of CHEST, the peer-reviewed journal of the American College of Chest Physicians.

WAIST SIZE PREDICTS LUNG FUNCTION

Waist size may be a better predictor of lung function than weight or body mass index (BMI), shows a new study. A New York-based research team analyzed adiposity markers, smoking histories, and pulmonary function test results of 2,153 men and women (mean age 56.8 years) living in western New York State. Adiposity markers included weight, BMI, abdominal height, waist-to-hip ratio, and waist circumference. In women, abdominal height and waist circumference were negatively associated with FEV1%, while all five adiposity markers were negatively associated with FVC%. In men, all adiposity markers were inversely associated with FEV1% and FVC%. Overall, abdominal height and waist circumference explained the greatest proportion of variance in lung function. In addition, researchers found that, in men and women with BMI e25 kg/m2, lung function decreased as abdominal height increased, suggesting that the link between lung function and abdominal height is not limited to obese patients. The study appears in the April issue of CHEST, the peer-reviewed journal of the American College of Chest Physicians.

FDNY SMOKERS QUIT HABIT USING COMPREHENSIVE CESSATION PROGRAM

New research shows that using a combination approach to smoking cessation may improve abstinence rates. New York researchers enrolled 164 rescue workers from the Fire Department of New York (FDNY) and 56 household family members in a comprehensive smoking cessation program, consisting of a three-month treatment phase and follow-up assessments at 6 and 12 months. The treatment phase provided counseling, support, and nicotine medications for 3 months, with visits every 3 to 4 weeks. Nicotine medications were scaled based on participants' personal tobacco history. After the treatment phase, 17 percent and 12 percent of participants reported continued use of nicotine medications at 3- and 6-months, respectively. Confirmed continuous abstinence rates were 47 percent, 36 percent, and 37 percent, respectively, after 3-months of treatment and 6- and 12-month follow-ups. Abstinence rates exceeded those of prior studies using nicotine patches alone and equaled rates reported in studies using combination medication. Overall, scaling the number of nicotine medications based on reported tobacco use did not increase frequency or intensity of adverse events. Researchers conclude that a combination approach to smoking cessation is safe and effective. The study appears in the April issue of CHEST, the peer-reviewed journal of the American College of Chest Physicians.

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
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