What are the dangers of carbon monoxide and tar?

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 11,853
    Tobacco Treatment Specialist Eletta Hansen discusses the dangers of carbon monoxide and tar that are found in cigarettes.

    Host: What are the dangers of carbon monoxide and tar?

    Eletta Hansen: Carbon monoxide actually replaces some of the oxygen in our blood. So, it means that many of the vital organs of the body do not get the blood and the nourishment it needs. The heart has to work much harder to get the blood contaminated with carbon monoxide throughout the body. The tar infiltrates the airways within the lungs and begins to clog them, thus causing the shortness of breath overtime. If you are a smoker and you smoke one pack of cigarettes a day for a year, you inhale somewhere between a pint and the pint and a half of tar. A smoker's lung is not pink tissue, it is carbon colored, it looks more like your fireplace and this continues to accumulate year after year, when you are chronic smoker.