first case of secondhand smoke causing immediate death

GGW Laurie

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Smoky bar triggered fatal asthma attack
First case of secondhand smoke causing an immediate death, study says

updated 5:38 p.m. CT, Fri., Feb. 8, 2008
A woman in her late teens died from an acute asthma attack triggered by secondhand cigarette smoke shortly after arriving at her job as a waitress in a bar in Michigan, researchers reported on Friday.

They said it was the first reported case of an immediate death caused by secondhand smoke.

She didnt have any other possible known causes of death, said Dr. Kenneth Rosenman, a Michigan State University professor who oversees three state public health surveillance systems.
Cigarette smoke is known to trigger acute asthma attacks.

We know that particulate levels from secondhand cigarette smoke in bars like this reach sufficient levels to set off an asthma attack, Rosenman said.

He said the woman was a student who had a job at a fast-food restaurant, and worked a second job as a waitress at the bar. She was perfectly fine when she went to work, Rosenman said in a telephone interview.

After about 15 minutes, she had an acute asthma attack and collapsed on the floor. The autopsy clearly indicates she died from asthma, said Rosenman, who would not disclose the womans name or the precise place and time of her death for privacy reasons.

Rosenman said the woman had asthma since age 2. Her asthma was poorly controlled. She had made four visits to her doctor in the year before her death for flare-ups, and had been treated in a hospital emergency department two to three times that year.

Although she had prescriptions for an assortment of drugs to prevent and treat asthma attacks, she was reported to only use them when she was having breathing difficulty.

On the evening of her death, she had no inhaler with her. When she became sick, she told the bar manager she needed to go to the hospital, then collapsed on the dance floor.

Bar patrons offered an inhaler and the woman tried to use it, but could not. Emergency response workers were unable to revive her and she died shortly thereafter.

Rosenman, who wrote about the case in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine, said 24 U.S. states prohibit smoking in public places such as bars. A number of other states, including Michigan, are considering it.
 

winbig

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That's such a sad story, but....

Nevermind, I won't get into it out of respect for her, but anyone else can see how this could have been prevented.


Let's just say that if I go into a bar, I expect to be surrounded by cigarette smoke, unless it's outlawed in that city. To think otherwise is just plain ignorance. :rolleyes:
 

RobWin

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That's such a sad story, but....

Nevermind, I won't get into it out of respect for her, but anyone else can see how this could have been prevented.


Let's just say that if I go into a bar, I expect to be surrounded by cigarette smoke, unless it's outlawed in that city. To think otherwise is just plain ignorance. :rolleyes:
It's sad to say but you are absolutely right Win...always try to avoid the situations that may lead to undesired consequences...
 

winbig

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It's sad to say but you are absolutely right Win...always try to avoid the situations that may lead to undesired consequences...
You know, the bar itself could be sued if they knew she had a serious asthma problem before hiring her. Can we say negligence?
 

winbig

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It's sad to say but you are absolutely right Win...always try to avoid the situations that may lead to undesired consequences...
You know, the bar itself could be sued if they knew she had a serious asthma problem before hiring her. Can we say negligence?

But all in all, the bar would prevail IMO....ultimately it boiled down to her not carrying her inhaler with her that night. Perhaps if she had it with her, she could have gotten to it alot quicker and in time.
 

RobWin

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You know, the bar itself could be sued if they knew she had a serious asthma problem before hiring her. Can we say negligence?

But all in all, the bar would prevail IMO....ultimately it boiled down to her not carrying her inhaler with her that night. Perhaps if she had it with her, she could have gotten to it alot quicker and in time.
Yep, have to agree with you there Win, you make a couple good points there...
 

happygobrokey

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has anyone ever dropped dead while in the midst of smoking a cigarette from the smoke itself? i'd say first-hand even has never caused immediate death. perhaps it brings on a heart attack or an asthma attack which ultimately results in death. smoke or no smoke, without asthma she would not have died, right? and what is she thinking trying to work in a smoky bar when she knows she's severely asthmatic?

[/nit]

:thumbsup:
 

Mousey

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I feel sorry for the girl and her family. With the attention of the press, someone will (no doubt) sue someone.

Let's just say, I have asthma, and I smoke. There are things you do, don't do, and ways to do things. Using your brain is one of them.

Let's also say that we live in a society which is lawsuit-drunk, and which habitually seeks to blame others for bad consequences -- particularly if there might be a dollar or two to be made from suing -- (intimidate, coerce, extort remember?:).
 

babs7262

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Im sorry for the girl and her family as well but I just dont buy the cause of death. She didnt properly take care of herself like not taking all of her meds, going for more visits, working in a bar where there is smoke, not having her inhaler with her. That is such crap for the M.E. to make that the official cause of death.
 

GGW Laurie

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Im sorry for the girl and her family as well but I just dont buy the cause of death. She didnt properly take care of herself like not taking all of her meds, going for more visits, working in a bar where there is smoke, not having her inhaler with her. That is such crap for the M.E. to make that the official cause of death.
...so many states are going smoke free even in bars and as i just found out a few days ago the casino in metropolis, ill has gone smoke free and from what i understand bizz is way down at the casino. i feel for the young girl and her family and i agree with babs the m.e might be jumping the gun on this one. it sounds like an agenda to get a no smoking law put into motion in michigan imo. i smoke but try to be the polite smoker, if it offends others when im out somewhere i put it out.
 

winbig

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...so many states are going smoke free even in bars and as i just found out a few days ago the casino in metropolis, ill has gone smoke free and from what i understand bizz is way down at the casino. i feel for the young girl and her family and i agree with babs the m.e might be jumping the gun on this one. it sounds like an agenda to get a no smoking law put into motion in michigan imo. i smoke but try to be the polite smoker, if it offends others when im out somewhere i put it out.
I can guarantee the smokers have left Metropolis, and will never be back. Aztar, another riverboat casino, is only about 1.5 hours away in Indiana.
 

GGW Laurie

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I can guarantee the smokers have left Metropolis, and will never be back. Aztar, another riverboat casino, is only about 1.5 hours away in Indiana.
...i like aztar but it seems like you walk forever just to get on the boat and it is about 20 miles closer to me than metropolis. we had planned on going this weekend and even told garry incase he wanted to ride up with us, but ill stick to tunica, more fun.has indiana gone smoke free yet? also since the casino at metropolis is on water and you have to be over 21 isnt there some sort of special rule that would apply? im just thinking and typing out loud......laurie
 

winbig

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...i like aztar but it seems like you walk forever just to get on the boat and it is about 20 miles closer to me than metropolis. we had planned on going this weekend and even told garry incase he wanted to ride up with us, but ill stick to tunica, more fun.has indiana gone smoke free yet? also since the casino at metropolis is on water and you have to be over 21 isnt there some sort of special rule that would apply? im just thinking and typing out loud......laurie
When I lived in Evansville, I was about 10 minutes from Aztar...it was nice, and dangerous at the same time :oops:


Indiana is far from becoming 100% smoke free in public places, and I seriously doubt they will ever be. When I moved from Evansville, you could still smoke in some McDonald's...lol

Aztar is in the water as well....They used to sail, but stopped some years ago. I remember when they first got their license. There was a huge controversy between KY and IN over who 'owned' parts of the Ohio river, and tried to stop them from sailing....

They have also gone smoke free in certain areas, but IIRC, you can smoke anywhere on the boat except for the first floor.

FWIW, the nice thing about small riverboats such as Aztar is there's a small area you have to go through to get on the boat. So if you put yourself on the exclusion list, you have a slim to none chance of sneaking in if you wanted to gamble there. As with regular B&M casinos, you could get in unnoticed and gamble to your hearts content as long as you didn't use your players card.
 

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