I am 57 years old. I lived with heavy smokers for 18 years, I have an overlapping history of smoking from age 15 to 30 (with probably ~ 12pack years)
A tiny nodule (3mm) was found in my right lung as a result of a work up for a GI issue.
I have avoided second hand cigarette smoke as much as I possibly can, renting only in non-smoking apt buildings, etc.
Other tenants where I now live are ignoring the no smoking rule and smoking indoors, and the smoke- or at the very least the smell of cig smoke- is filtering into my apt.
It is so bad that it is making one of my cats sick- she is vomiting and now will not eat & I have a mild cough that I did not have before.
It's been 27 yrs since I quit smoking so I am not horribly worried about that small nodule being lung cancer, but still, if it is, could this amount of second hand smoke make it grow faster?
Does smelling cig smoke mean you are exposed to the toxins, or can you just be exposed to the odor and just annoyed by that but not at increased risk?
On a related note- the cigarette smoking makes me very very angry. (yes I've contacted the landlord but he doesn't live here and is limited in what he can do- he'll send them a reminder about it being a non smoking building, but really he's more interested in not losing any tenants)
Part of my anger is at myself, because it reminds me that I used to smoke and I feel helpless to erase any damage that may have done to my daughter and to myself.
Part of my anger is at the smokers for exposing me to something I have tried so hard to get away from.
I tried to find studies about the effects of emotions on cancer growth with no luck. I know that anger affects my heart.
Could my reaction to the smoking be worse than the actual smoke itself?
My mother, father and step father all had lung cancer. My uncle died from smoking related throat cancer. My brother has COPD.