Vaping is linked to wheezing and shortness of breath, especially in teenagers and young adults. So is the electronic cigarette as harmful as the normal cigarette? Dr. William Lowenstein, president of SOS Addictions, sheds some light on this.
A 20-year-old man, Sean Tobin, had surgery: part of his lung was removed due to excessive vaping. According to the newspaper The Sunwhich reports the case, the organ of the young man “was riddled with black spots“who were”carbon deposits, related to vaping“.
Vaping triggers respiratory symptoms
In addition to this particular dramatic case, scientific studies have already been carried out on the harmful effects of vaping.
Between 2014 and 2018, scientists followed 2097 students, aged 17 on average, to assess their respiratory health. During this period, the young people had to complete a questionnaire on their consumption of tobacco products (cigarettes or e-cigarettes) and their respiratory symptoms. During each survey, they were asked to indicate their consumption of cigarettes and e-cigarettes during the past 30 days. In subsequent years, other information was requested, such as their cannabis use.
Results: The main effects observed in vapers are wheezing, symptoms of bronchitis and shortness of breath. After adjusting the results with the use of cigarettes, cannabis and exposure to passive smoking, e-cigarettes still increased the risk of wheezing by 48%, symptoms of bronchitis by 58% and shortness of breath by 52%. .
“Vaping is worse than smoking? No it’s not!”
Should we conclude that vaping is worse than tobacco? No, says Dr. Benjamin Toll of MUSC Hollings Cancer Center, an American cancer center. “I’ve met a lot of well-meaning doctors who tell me, ‘Vaping is worse than smoking.’ And I tell them, ‘No, it’s not!’
He adds : “Let’s be clear: I am opposed to underage vaping. Youth use of any tobacco product is unsafe, and outreach strategies should not inadvertently create the impression that e-cigarettes are acceptable for young people. But for adults who have tried all drug methods, in particular, the complete transition to electronic cigarettes could be a way – less harmful, but not completely safe – to quit smoking.
The point of view of Dr. Willam Lowenstein, president of SOS Addictions
Asked about the subject, Dr. William Lowenstein, president of SOS Addictions, shares this point of view. “Between tobacco, which kills more than 70,000 people each year and which kills one in two people prematurely, and another option, in this case the vaper, for which we lack hindsight but which shows lower risks, my choice is unreservedly towards the second option“says the doctor.
“By avoiding tobacco, we are no longer exposed to its combustion, which represents the greatest risk. I’m not saying that vaping should be started if you don’t smoke. On the other hand, it is certain that it remains one of the best ways to get out of tobacco and quit smoking permanently, in the long term. concludes the doctor.
In summary, there’s no reason to vape if you haven’t started, but if you smoke and want to quit, vaping can be a helpful option to guide you through quitting.