FILE PHOTO: The headquarters of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is shown in Silver Spring, Maryland, November 4, 2009. REUTERS/Jason Reed

(Reuters) – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Thursday proposed new health warnings for cigarette packages and advertisements, as small size and lack of an image in current warnings make them virtually invisible.

Cigarette packages would have to carry colored photos about half their size and outline lesser known health risks such as bladder cancer, diabetes, erectile dysfunction and conditions that can cause blindness, the FDA said in a statement.

Research has shown that the current warnings on cigarette packages are “virtually invisible to both smokers and non-smokers”, the FDA said.

The FDA said the proposed changes could be the most significant to cigarette labels in more than 35 years.

Reporting by Manas Mishra in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli



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