Everybody is aware of that smoking is harmful to health, but what most people don't know is smoking also affects to efficacy of drugs.
Many studies have showed more than harmful to health, smoking is also interfered metabolism, decrease the effect of medicines, and even delay the treatment of illness. It might blame to smoking while some patients follow the doctor's instruction, but get the result not as good as their anticipation. After nicotine contained in the cigarette entering human body, it will speed up or slow down the metabolism of the drug by working on the metabolic enzyme system in liver, which decreases the effective concentration of the drug in blood and influence the efficacy. Nicotine also promotes the release of antidiuretic hormones, which delay the elimination of metabolites to trigger the drug accumulation in body and get drug poisoning. In addition, smoking too much can wear and tear on the mineral substances and nutrients which are necessary to the synthesis of vitamin C, vitamin B6 and vitamin B12 as well, indirectly influence treatment negatively.
According to the studies, only those analgesic-antipyretics, anaesthetics, anti-asthmatics, anti-anginal drugs, antiplatelet drugs, hypolipidemics, hypoglycemics, diuretics, antacids, gastric mucosal protective drugs and anticonceptives, etc. are affected by smoking significantly, for example, the commonly used drugs including theophylline, caffeine, propranolol, antipyrine, imipramine, phenacetin, dextropropoxyphene and furosemidum.
Therefore, the patients should pay close attention especially during the period of taking these medicines. It is strongly suggest quiting smoking during the medication, particularly to the patients who suffer from diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, gastric ulcers, lung disease, allergic disease and cancer, because smoking would affect mostly to the incidence and curative effects of these diseases. Next, do not smoking during half an hour after taking medicines strictly. The studies indicated, if you smoke withing the 30 minutes afterwards, the blood drug level will drop to 1/20 of the non-smoking level, which makes the medicines invalid.
Moreover, when seeing a doctor, smokers should honestly talk about their smoking history and the daily quantity of cigarettes for the doctor's reference. Although temporarily quitting smoke will do help to treatment, but previous long smoking history may already changed the physical condition, and that will have influence on the efficacy of the drugs. To offset the influence of smoking, doctors may adjust prescription and the quantity of medicines according to the real situation.
Date: March 14, 2012