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HMC doctors delve into long-term impact of shisha smoking

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Shisha smoking

Amid efforts to reduce tobacco usage in Qatar, local medical researchers are conducting a study to further examine the health impact of smoking shisha.

Hamad Medical Corp. (HMC) is specifically looking into how the popular regional pastime affects heart, blood vessels and the respiratory system. To arrive at its findings, HMC is looking to interview individuals who have smoked shisha daily for the past decade, but have never smoked cigarettes.

Considerable research on the harmful contents of shisha smoking already exists, with HMC doctors saying one session is the equivalent of puffing through a pack of cigarettes. However, there is less information on the long-term health impact of only huffing on a hookah.

Within those studies that do exist, academic researchers often separate waterpipe and cigarette smokers in their studies, though some acknowledge that many individuals will have used both forms during their lifetime.

While specific statistics on the prevalence of shisha use are reportedly not kept, HMC said that 37 percent of Qatar residents above the age of 15 smoke some form of tobacco.

The high number of smokers in this country may be one reason that several anti-tobacco efforts have come up short in recent years.

Local laws

Last November, restaurants and cafes at Souq Waqif were ordered to stop serving shisha indoors and set aside half of their outdoor tables for non-smokers. However, managers at the popular destination appear to have quickly backtracked on the the seating rules.

It’s already illegal to smoke cigarettes or waterpipes in closed spaces, even though many restaurants and cafes continue to serve shisha indoors.

And several residents have recently been noting on Twitter how common it is to see someone smoking a cigarette inside a shopping mall.

Smoking in villagio surrounded by families..

Posted by Sajid Sayed on Wednesday, August 27, 2014

However, a new law is currently in the works to strengthen enforcement of the country’s anti-smoking laws.

Other countries in the Middle East are also looking at ways of reducing shisha smoking rates.

Earlier this year, municipal officials in Jordan went further by vowing to enforce its existing ban on smoking in public places by refusing to renew or issue new licences in Amman to serve shisha – effectively banning the practice in cafes.

Those interested in participating in the HMC study can contact Ahmed Al Mulla at 4439-2778 or Al Adawi at 4439-0637.

Thoughts?

22 COMMENTS

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Deepak Babu
Deepak Babu
7 years ago

I want to conduct a research into ” Why laws are not enforced in Qatar?” Can I get some funding please?

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago

Not just malls, but go to the Belgium Cafe, or Jazz Club or any bar and cafes and restaurants in Doha and they are full to the brim with smokers, arrogantly killing those around them. Rules, Laws…no one cares for them in Qatar, never enforced, just don’t stick your finger up at an imbecile who nearly kills you on the roads…ohhh now that is real bad and the only law enforced.

Gareth Walters
Gareth Walters
7 years ago
Reply to  Observant One

Smoking in bars is not illegal. there are non smoking bars, it is your choice to go somewhere like the Belgian Cafe, so not really fair to say “arrogantly killing those around them” you don’t have to go there.

Saleem
Saleem
7 years ago
Reply to  Gareth Walters

Or they can be more considerate of others and go out for a smoke.

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago
Reply to  Saleem

Those people are not breaking the law though, lets concentrate on enforcing the laws they have already before trying to impose morals and politness on people!

Saleem
Saleem
7 years ago
Reply to  MIMH

There are no laws against not taking showers, eating with your mouth wide open, feeding your kids junk food every day etc., but sometimes we should regulate our own behavior instead of depending on an external body to do it for us.

Next time you see someone smoking at a mall, stand in front of them with a plate full of food and chew very slowly with your mouth wide open while staring at them until they’re visibly uncomfortable. If they comment, at least you can rebuttal with your not violating any rules while they are.

Jaded
Jaded
7 years ago
Reply to  Saleem

that’s probably the quickest way to get an exit permit

Saleem
Saleem
7 years ago
Reply to  Jaded

Well there you go, if you anticipate delays receiving an EP then just head to one of the major malls and do what I suggested, kill two birds with one stone.

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago
Reply to  Saleem

Good points.

Aussiegirl
Aussiegirl
7 years ago
Reply to  Gareth Walters

I knew there was a reason I no longer went to that stinking dive.

Observant One
Observant One
7 years ago
Reply to  Gareth Walters

It actually is conjecture as to if it is or isn’t, the law states ‘enclosed public areas’….In any event with people eating its just plain rude to be blowing smoke..its called respect for others. And i don’t go as its full of morons with no respect for other humans killing themselves with tar and they aren’t taking me with them.

Gareth Walters
Gareth Walters
7 years ago
Reply to  Observant One

All i am saying is that you have a choice, smokers and non smokers. i agree that you shouldn’t be allowed to smoke if there is food being served, however there are still smoking bars and non smoking bars. if that is the rule then it isn’t really fair to complain either way.

A_qtr
A_qtr
7 years ago

smoking is disgusting.

MIMH
MIMH
7 years ago

Haha new laws to strengthen enforcement. What will the law say this time. You are on your last warning and we really, really mean it this time. If we catch you smoking again in a prohibited place we will pass an even stronger law and that will show you….

Jaded
Jaded
7 years ago

“a new law is currently in the works to strengthen enforcement of the country’s anti-smoking laws”

What about enforcing the existing law? Someone lights up in a mall, security stroll past unwilling to do anything about it for obvious reasons.

Oracle
Oracle
7 years ago
Reply to  Jaded

The new law will focus on enforcing the existing one. However, it will have to pass a public consultation in “shisha majlees” :))))

Chipper fluffypants
Chipper fluffypants
7 years ago

Starbucks at Landmark. Each table has a big no smoking sign in the middle yet every table is full of smokers. I told the security guard one time to stop them. He told me only locals are allowed to smoke. I almost fell over….

Oracle
Oracle
7 years ago

That’s why I’m simply avoiding it.

I also suggest HMC to conduct a study focusing on “How to serve the patients?”

johnny wang
johnny wang
7 years ago

Forget the long term effects the short term effect itself is bad enough. All the smell and stink from the shishas being smoked creates a very bad atmosphere around the place where it is being smoked and the smell wafting from this places where this are being smoked is a serious pollution hazard for others wandering around that area

desertCard
desertCard
7 years ago
Reply to  johnny wang

Shisha actually smells OK, cigs not so much

Ammad Khan
Ammad Khan
6 years ago
Reply to  desertCard

Read more at http://www.smokingshisha.co
It actually explains how its different to smoking cigarettes

Saeed Ahmad Khan
Saeed Ahmad Khan
7 years ago

Smoke and die

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