New study finds that e-cigarettes increase cardiovascular risk as much as cigarettes

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THE usage of e-cigarettes containing nicotine has a significant impact on vascular functions claims new study. Research published in the SAGE journal, Vascular Medicine, has brought new research to light on the significant health risks of e-cigarettes with nicotine.

The study revealed that smokers of e-cigarettes experienced the same, if not higher level of cardiovascular elevation for prolonged periods after smoking the e-cigarette. The findings have significant implications for our understanding of the use of e-cigarettes on long-term cardiovascular risk.

Conducted by Franzen et al., results were obtained by monitoring participant’s vitals during and after they had smoked a cigarette, e-cigarette, or nicotine-free e-cigarette. The smoking lasted for one cigarette, at least five minutes, and the vaping lasted for one session for five minutes. Vitals were monitored for two hours from when smoking commenced.

Researchers found that using e-cigarettes and cigarettes, in comparison to nicotine-free e-cigarettes, had the same significant impact on vitals, with participant’s blood pressure and heart rate being affected.

Peripheral systolic blood pressure was raised significantly for 45 minutes after using an e-cigarette and 15 minutes after smoking a cigarette. Heart rate also remained elevated for 45 minutes for e-cigarettes, with the increase being higher than 8 percent for the first 30 minutes.

In comparison, traditional cigarettes only raised heart rate for 30 minutes and there was again no change when using nicotine-free e-cigarettes. Franzen et al. use this data to state that the e-cigarettes can be as dangerous as cigarettes, simply concluding that: “The increased parameters within the nicotine-containing devices might be a link to an increased cardiovascular risk which is well known for cigarettes.”

As one of the first trials studying blood pressure and heart rate elevation in relation to e-cigarette use, the authors emphasised the need for further studies in the area, stating:“Future trials should focus on chronic effects of vaping nicotine-containing
or nicotine-free liquids on peripheral and central blood pressures as well as on arterial stiffness. Since no endothelial dysfunction nor gender differences were described for three different arms in literature, it would be important for future trials to address these items.”