On Thursday, The FDA unveiled a new campaign to fight tobacco use.
You’ve probably seen the public service announcements featuring former smokers severely disfigured by cancer. Now, the FDA hopes to drive the message home with graphic new health warnings on cigarette packages and labels.
The proposed warning labels will show what the FDA calls the lesser known consequences of smoking–conditions like cancerous tumors, COPD, lost limbs and macular degeneration.
The American Lung Association says graphic warning labels are proven to reduce the chances that kids will start to smoke and also prompt smokers to get the help they need to quit.
Altoona lung specialist Dr. George Zlupko hopes the new warnings will be effective, but he’s not optimistic.
“I have patients who’ve been cured of lung cancers, who continue to smoke, and how much of a warning do you need, how much of an incentive do you need to stop smoking if you’ve gotten lung cancer, you’ve been cured of it, then you continue to smoke,” he says.
He adds that it’s hard to understand, except for the fact that nicotine is extremely addictive.
Cigarette labels were last updated in 1984 to include a warning on the side of the box from the surgeon general, that smoking may be hazardous to your health.