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Video shows what can happen to your lungs after chainsmoking cigarettes AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar, File

Warning: This video contains imagery some may find disturbing.

On Friday, July 22, Business Insider published a video titled “This is what your lungs look like after just 20 cigarettes.” The video quickly racked up more than 17 million views and 226,000 shares, but the experiment wasn’t a new one — the video footage has made the rounds online for several years now.

During the video, scientists are seen conducting an experiment on a healthy set of lungs. The organs are placed inside a sealed, clear box and cigarette smoke is then pumped into them. This process is repeated 20 times to demonstrate just how extreme the buildup of tar on the trachea is from smoking one pack of Marlboro Menthol cigarettes.

Here is a similar video from the The Daily Mail, which took the experiment even further by testing the effects of 60 cigarettes.

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As you can see when one of the scientists cuts the trachea open, the thick black tar residue is quite shocking, particularly when contrasted with a smoke-free trachea that reflects what the organ ought to look like when healthy. Additionally, you can see that the lungs are discolored. 

So, what do you think: is this experiment a good indication of the harmful effects of cigarettes, or an exaggerated attempt to vilify them?

Helene Vincent is an editor for Rare. Follow her on Twitter @HMV5.
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