Are e-cigarettes more harmful than normal cigarettes?
A recent American study suggests that the use of e-cigarettes is associated with an increased risk of developing heart attacks. In addition, those affected seem to be more likely to suffer from depression.
The University of Kansas scientists found in their current study that using e-cigarettes can lead to increased rates of heart attacks and depression compared to people who don't use e-cigarettes. The experts will publish the results of their study at this year's meeting of the American College of Cardiology on March 18, 2019.
Increased risks from e-cigarettes
According to the study, the use of e-cigarettes leads to an increase in the incidence of heart attacks by 34 percent, 25 percent more frequent heart disease and 55 percent more people suffering from depression or anxiety. These associations were also true when other cardiovascular risk factors such as age, high cholesterol, blood pressure, gender, smoking and body mass index were taken into account. The study could not determine exactly whether the increased risk already existed before the use of e-cigarettes or whether the risk directly arises from the inhaled substances, the doctors explain. Little has been known about cardiovascular events related to the use of e-cigarettes, says study author Dr. Mohinder Vindhyal from the University of Kansas added. The researchers see a real wake-up call in their results and call for more attention to the dangers of e-cigarettes. If the risk of a heart attack among e-cigarette users increases by up to 34 percent compared to non-smokers, it is not recommended that people use such products, the experts advise.
Effects of cigarette smoking much worse
For the study, the data from a total of 96,467 subjects in the so-called National Health Interview Survey was evaluated. This was a survey by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Traditional cigarette smokers were much more likely to develop a heart attack (165 percent), coronary artery disease (94 percent), and stroke (78 percent) compared to non-smoking people. In addition, smoking subjects were more likely to have elevated blood pressure, diabetes, poor circulation, and depression or anxiety. Smoking cigarettes leads to a much higher risk of heart attacks and strokes than e-cigarettes, but that doesn't mean that using e-cigarettes is healthy or safe, the scientists say. E-cigarettes can release toxic compounds. On closer inspection, it was noticed that regardless of the frequency with which someone used e-cigarettes daily or only for some days, there was still an increased risk of a heart attack or coronary artery disease.
Flavors modify the existing risks
The results supported previous research into the effects of e-cigarettes, which suggest that the use of e-cigarettes could be more harmful to health than previously thought. The increased risk mainly depends on the flavors used in the e-cigarettes. These can severely damage the lungs and even trigger pneumonia. Due to the aromas contained, even short-term use of e-cigarettes can lead to major damage, which may even be greater than when smoking normal cigarettes, the experts speculate. (as)