(HealthDay News) — Tobacco exposure is associated with elevated blood pressure in U.S. children and adolescents, according to a study published online in JAMA Network Open.

Rebecca V. Levy, BM, BCh, from Montefiore Medical Center in New York City, and colleagues used data from the 2007 to 2016 US National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (including 8520 children aged 8 to 19 years) to examine the association between tobacco exposure and elevated blood pressure in children.

The researchers found that participants with any tobacco smoke exposure were more likely than those without exposure to be older (mean age, 13.3 vs 12.8 years), male (53 vs 49%), and non-Hispanic Black (19 vs 10%). In an adjusted analysis, the odds of having elevated blood pressure were higher with any tobacco exposure (adjusted odds ratio, 1.31), with comparable results seen across subgroups. These results remained significant in multiple sensitivity analyses.

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“Thus, tobacco exposure, which is harmful to many body systems, may also be harmful to the cardiovascular system in children and adolescents,” the authors write.


Levy RV, Brathwaite KE, Sarathy H, et al. Analysis of Active and Passive Tobacco Exposures and Blood Pressure in US Children and Adolescents. JAMA Netw Open. 2021;4(2):e2037936. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.37936