Leonard Nimoy's widow urges current smokers to stop now before they suffer the same lung disease that her husband killed.
In a new commercial for the CDC's Tips From Former Smokers campaign, Susan Nimoy explained that the actor had & # 39; chronic breathing difficulties as long as I knew him & # 39 ;.
She added that Nimoy was always convinced that he would die from lung cancer, but not from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a group of diseases that includes emphysema and bronchitis, especially years after he was stopped.
& # 39; You always think you have more time than you, and you really don't, & # 39; Susan warns when the video ends.
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Leonard Nimoy & # 39; s widow Susan (photo) appeared in a new commercial for CDC's Tips From Former Smokers campaign to warn current smokers about quitting
Nimoy, best known for his role as Spock in the Star Trek franchise, smoked for 37 years before stopping in 1985. In 2013, he was diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease after years of difficulty in breathing while walking and persistent cough. Pictured: Nimoy in Star Trek, left and towards the end of his life, anyway
Nimoy, best known for his role as a Spock in the Star Trek franchise, started smoking as a teenager and continued for 37 years, Susan told in an interview with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
He tried – and failed – to quit several times, but eventually did so in 1985 when his first grandson was born and he was worried about the harm of passive smoking.
However, the decades-value of smoking had seriously damaged Nimoy's lungs. He had difficulty breathing while walking and had a persistent cough.
He was diagnosed with COPD in 2013, despite quitting smoking 28 years earlier.
COPD is a group of diseases, including emphysema and chronic bronchitis, that block the airways and cause breathing problems.
Early stages usually show little to no symptoms, but later stages include symptoms such as persistent cough, shortness of breath and wheezing.
In addition, glucose, which is normally pumped into the bloodstream to fight infection, leaks into the airways. This leads to infections by supplying food for bacteria.
According to the CDC, COPD has been diagnosed in nearly 16 million American adults – nearly 40 percent are current smokers.
There is currently no cure, so doctors recommend lifestyle changes and treatments such as medication and supplemental oxygen.
Doctors tried to relieve Nimoy's symptoms by prescribing new drugs, giving him stationary and portable oxygen, and even physiotherapy.
But Susan told the CDC that when Nimoy's condition deteriorated, he could walk no more than 30 meters before he was out of breath.
& # 39; The last month where he had to go [the emergency room] three times it was traumatic for both of us, & Susan said. & # 39; Really terrifyingly frightening. & # 39;
COPD is a group of diseases that block the respiratory tract and cause respiratory problems and are usually caused by smoking. Pictured: Nimoy, right and Susan on their wedding day
Nimoy was prescribed new medication and oxygenated but his condition deteriorated and he died of COPD complications in February 2015 at the age of 83. Pictured: Nimoy, right and Susan, date unknown
During the last years of his life, Nimoy became a loyal anti-smoking lawyer, especially on Twitter, where he called on his follower to quit smoking. Pictured: Nimoy as Spock, right, and Jeffrey Hunter as Captain Christopher Pike, left, in Star Trek, 1965
The actor became a loyal anti-smoking lawyer, especially on Twitter, where he called on his followers to quit smoking.
& # 39; I quit smoking 30 years ago. Not quick enough. I have COPD. Grandpa says, stop now! & # 39; he wrote in January 2014, when he first made his diagnosis public.
He then signed with & # 39; LLAP & # 39 ;, an abbreviation of Spock's infamous sentence: & # 39; Live Long and Prosper & # 39 ;.
Another tweet from January 2015 was: & # 39; Don't smoke. I did. Wish I never had. LLAP. & # 39;
In February 2015, Nimoy fell into a coma and died two days later at his home in Bel Air from COPD complications.
The new commercial with Susan, which was released on April 1, has been viewed almost 4,000 times on Facebook and YouTube.
According to the CDC, the Tips From Former Smokers campaign helped over nine million Americans quit smoking and helped 500,000 quit smoking forever between 2012 and 2015.