Using a smoking machine, reference cigarettes, a commercial brand of nonfilter 85 millimeter cigarettes, a medium priced cigar, and a popular brand of pipe tobacco, both wet ashing and dry ashing procedures were carried out to determine the cadmium (7440439) content to which smokers were being exposed. Cigarettes varied from 1.31 to 1.28 micrograms (microg) of cadmium per cigarette, which corresponded to 1.17 to 1.62microg per gram (g) of cigarette. For cigar tobacco a total of 1.86microg/g was found and in pipe tobacco the content was 0.93microg/g. Only 6 to 7 percent of the cadmium in the smoked portion of the cigarette appeared in the tar, while the unsmoked butts were enriched with 10 to 27 percent of the cadmium of the smoked portion. The ash contained 25 to 34 percent of the cadmium of the smoked portions. The authors suggest that the remaining cadmium, 40 to 55 percent, is lost in the sidestream during smoking and between puffs. This indicated that not only is the one smoking at risk from cadmium exposure, but so are the others present in the vicinity. The indoor pollution of cadmium in a smoker's environment must be considerably more than the levels found in ambient outside air in large cities. As cadmium exposure can affect pulmonary function resulting in bronchitis and emphysema, the authors urge that cadmium exposure from smoking be considered further.
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