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Christy Turlington

Emphysema

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Updated December 14, 2009

emphysema, smoking cessation aids, Christy Turlington
Getty Images/Rob Loud
In the 90's, supermodel Christy Turlington found herself in the prime of her career. She had a multi-million dollar contract with Calvin Klein, freedom to choose what fashion shows to walk in -- and a smoking habit that would permanently damage her lungs. The classic beauty was diagnosed with early stage emphysema after undergoing a spiral CT scan when she was 31. Turlington was diagnosed five years after quitting smoking.

Turlington was extremely fortunate to be diagnosed at such an early stage. Most people are diagnosed at a much later age and when the disease is more advanced. While the damage to her lungs is permanent, it is unlikely to worsen because she no longer smokes. Many people don't realize that the health benefits of quitting smoking begin the minute they put out the last cigarette. If Turlington had not quit when she did, the lung damage would probably had been much worse.

Today, Christy Turlington remains a fierce advocate for smoking cessation and lung cancer awareness. She has filmed several PSA spots in the United States and the United Kingdom, most recently for the Stand Up 2 Cancer organization.

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