The effect of cigar smoking on indoor levels of carbon monoxide and particles

J Expo Anal Environ Epidemiol. 1999 Nov-Dec;9(6):622-35. doi: 10.1038/sj.jea.7500065.


To provide new information on environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) levels from cigars, we conducted three types of experiments: (1) Measurements of carbon monoxide (CO) during 15 controlled experiments in an office where several cigar brands were machine-smoked; (2) Measurements of CO or respirable suspended particles (RSP) and particle-bound polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) in a residence where two cigars were smoked by a person; and (3) Measurements of CO during two studies at cigar social events (where there were up to 18 cigars being smoked at a time) in which an investigator wore a concealed personal exposure monitor. Average concentrations of CO at the cigar social events were comparable to, or larger than, those observed on a freeway during rush hour traffic. A mass balance model that has been used successfully to predict ETS from cigarettes is used in this paper to obtain CO, RSP, and PAH emission factors (emission rate [mg/min], total mass emitted [mg], and emissions per mass smoked [mg/g]). The calculated emission factors show that the cigar can be a stronger source of CO than the cigarette. In contrast, the cigar may have fewer emissions of RSP and PAH per gram of consumed tobacco than the cigarette, but its size and longer smoking time results in greater total RSP and PAH emissions than for a single cigarette.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Air Pollutants / analysis*
  • Air Pollution, Indoor / analysis*
  • Carbon Monoxide / analysis*
  • Film Dosimetry
  • Humans
  • Hydrocarbons, Aromatic / analysis*
  • Particle Size
  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution / analysis*


  • Air Pollutants
  • Hydrocarbons, Aromatic
  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution
  • Carbon Monoxide