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Study: Smoking Deadlier For HIV Patients Than The Virus Itself

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File photo of a man smoking a cigarette.  (credit: Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)

File photo of a man smoking a cigarette. (credit: Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)

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CARY, N.C. (CBS Charlotte) – A new study has found that smokers with the human immunodeficiency virus are more likely to lose years off of their life spans to smoking than they are to the virus itself.

Danish researchers studied almost 3,000 HIV patients between 1995 and 2010, paying special attention to the fatalities of patients who smoked. They found that more than 60 percent of the deaths were associated with smoking rather than HIV, according to Nigerian newspaper The Guardian.

The loss of years of life associated with smoking was twice as high as the years of life lost to HIV, the paper additionally learned.

A press release obtained by The Guardian went on to state that the increased risk of death among HIV patients who smoked was three times higher than among those not infected with HIV.

“Our findings emphasize the importance of counseling HIV patients on smoking cessation, as smoking may impact their life expectancy considerably more than the HIV infections itself,” Dr. Marie Helleberg and her colleagues were quoted as saying in the study.

HIV is  that the virus that causes the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, known to most simply as AIDS.

The study was published in the December 19 issue of the online journal Clinical Infectious Diseases, whose American offices are located in North Carolina.

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