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Trends New Study Claims One-Third of Vapers Report Respiratory Symptoms

An Abstract presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2020, suggested that one out of three people using e-cigarettes or related products, experience symptoms associated with lung or respiratory tract injury.

The researchers of the study analysed the responses of 1,400 current e-cigarette and related products users, ages 18 to 64, who took part in a national, online survey in 2016. The researchers concluded that any respiratory symptoms reported by the participants may be attributed to vaping.

Although many people continue to view vaping or using e-cigarettes and related products as safeor at least safer than smoking combustible cigarettesthe use of these products can be risky,said Thanh-Huyen T. Vu, M.D., Ph.D., senior author of the study and research associate professor of epidemiology in the department of preventive medicine, at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago.

Several public health experts have previously spoken up about such claims and findings, yet these studies all seem to fail at disclosing what came first, the respiratory symptoms or vaping initiation. Therefore, given that it is a well known fact that most vapers are ex-smokers, attributing any negative health effects to vaping, when they are more likely residual effects of the previous (and more harmful) smoking, is nonsensical

Sadly, the researcher went on to refer to the EVALI outbreak, failing to point out that the injury was brought about by the consumption of illegal THC, rather than regular vaping products. Recent outbreaks of e-cigaretteor vaping-associated lung injuryknown as EVALIhave raised significant public health concerns about the impact of vaping on lung health. However, information is limited about clinical symptoms related to the use of different types of e-cigarettes and related products, especially information on symptoms among otherwise healthy individuals.

Vaping should only be taken up for harm reduction/smoking cessation purposes

Meanwhile, an earlier study by award winning and renowned expert in respiratory health and tobacco harm reduction, Prof. Riccardo Polosa, titled Health effects in COPD smokers who switch to electronic cigarettes: a retrospective-prospective 3-year follow-up, had indicated that patients suffering from the serious Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and had completely switched from cigarettes to e-cigarettes, reported improved respiratory symptoms. Meanwhile those who continued to smoke, experienced no change in either measure of disease severity.

Similarly, a comprehensive review also conducted by Polosa in August 2019, which was carried out with the aim of analysing the effects of vaping on lung health in comparison to those of smoking, had indicated once again that vaping is much less damaging to the lungs than smoking.

We critically assess published research on the respiratory system investigating the effects of ECs in pre-clinical models, clinical studies of people who switched to ECs from tobacco cigarettes, and population surveys. We assess the studies for the quality of their methodology and accuracy of their interpretation. To adequately assess the impact of EC use on human health, addressing common mistakes and developing robust and realistic methodological recommendations is an urgent priority,read the study Abstract.

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