Evidence grows by the day about the health risks of e-cigarette usage, more popularly referred to as vape pens. The problem however is that since e-cigarettes are strategically marketed to appear as the less harmful substitute for traditional cigarettes, It has become increasingly difficult to be sure whether the link between illness and vaping is just a matter of enough chain smokers switching to e-cigarettes before displaying symptoms for health issues.
Now researchers from Boston University have released a new study that set out to look at one of the first healthy samples of the population evaluating the damage of vaping at large independently from the use of other tobacco products.
The study can be found published in the JAMA Network Open. It reveals that people who used e-cigarettes in the past were found to be 21% more likely to suffer from a respiratory illness while health risks of e-cigarettes usage for current usage happened to be at 43 percent.
Dr. Andrew Stokes is an assistant professor of global health. He believes the study has for the very first time some much-needed longitudinal evidence on the health risks of e-cigarette usage.
He explains that in recent years it has become very apparent that the youth and young adults, in general, are pushing a dramatic increase of e-cigarette usage, this he thinks has taken the gains of decades in reverse. This evidence, Stokes thinks also indicates that the youth of today will grow into their midlife experiencing respiratory conditions such as COPD and asthma.
Past research on the respiratory health risks that come with vaping have previously only either used cell or animal models and when they did use humans they were only ever short-term clinical studies involving acute conditions.
For this study researchers took data on as many as 21,618 healthy participant adults, these people came from the first 4 waves of the nationally-representative Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH), which to date have remained the most comprehensive national-level survey for tobacco and e-cigarette concerned information.
To make sure people with pre-existing cigarette-related health issues did not seep into the data, they only included people who did not display any respiratory condition symptoms when they entered the PATH. They also adjusted the data to a set of health conditions.
After adjusting for different variables that may affect analysis as well as for demographic factors, the researchers on the study discovered that people who used e-cigarettes in the past could be linked to a 21% increased chance of developing a respiratory disease while current consumers were linked to be at a 43 percent risk for developing a respiratory disease.
Current e-cigarette smokers are linked to having a 33 percent chance of developing chronic bronchitis, 69 percent risk for emphysema, 57 percent for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and 31 percent chance of developing asthma risk
To conclude the study upholds massive evidence that not only Is vaping still a harmful activity even if one quits smoking in favor of e-cigarettes but is also the cause of serious respiratory conditions. This study thus should be reason enough to make plans to quit such a dangerous activity.