Letter: Smoking zealots?

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The Independent Culture
Sir: The claim by the BMA and sensationally headlined by the media that smoking men may become sexually impotent is not new research ("Smoking can ruin sex life, says Ash", 2 June). It is merely a collection of old reports, mostly drawn from the USA, some as long ago as 1985.

Even these claims are not fully substantiated by the evidence. The recent opinion poll actually concludes that most men believe that alcohol is the prime cause of impotency.

We suspect that this scaremongering has more to do with anti-smoking zealotry than actually addressing a condition that causes much distress to those affected.

It ill befits a responsible organisation like the BMA to give its name to mischievous and misleading information.

JOHN CARLISLE

Executive Director Public Affairs

Tobacco Manufacturers' Association

London SW1

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