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Smoking Tied to Multiple Sclerosis Progression

Harvard Study Links Smoking With Greater Risk of More Rapid Increase in MS Symptoms

Explaining the MS, Smoking Link

The researchers offered several theories about the mechanism that could be driving the smoking-MS connection. A number of recent studies have suggested a link between nitric oxide, one of many chemicals present in cigarette smoke, and MS.

Nitric oxide and other chemicals that smokers breathe in could also damage the cells that protect myelin, a protective nerve coating that is eventually destroyed by multiple sclerosis.

"At this stage, this is all speculation," Hernan says. "More study is needed to answer these questions."

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