Vaping Can Do as Much Heart Damage as Decades of Smoking

The following is excerpted from an online article posted by StudyFinds.

Researchers with the American Heart Association say vaping causes changes in cardiovascular function, which are similar to the impact of smoking tobacco products for nearly 20 years!

In two new studies, researchers examined the differences in heart health among people who used electronic nicotine delivery devices (e-cigarettes), those who smoked combustible cigarettes, and those who avoided both habits.

In the first study, participants who used either e-cigarettes or traditional tobacco cigarettes displayed higher increases in blood pressure, heart rate, and blood vessel constriction immediately after using those products. These problems indicate that the body’s sympathetic nervous system — a person’s fight-or-flight response — is activating.

“Immediately after vaping or smoking, there were worrisome changes in blood pressure, heart rate, heart rate variability and blood vessel tone (constriction),” says lead study author Matthew C. Tattersall, D.O., M.S., an assistant professor of medicine at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health and the associate director of preventive cardiology at UW Health, in a media release.

In the second study by the same team, researchers found that people who used e-cigarettes consistently performed worse in a treadmill test that predicts heart disease risk. Study authors compared people who vaped to those who never used nicotine.

Specifically, those using e-cigarettes had less exercise ability, completed a smaller cardiac workload when exercising at maximum effort, had a lower heart rate reserve (meaning they were in poorer shape), and had slower heart rate recovery after exercising.

“People who vaped clearly performed worse on all four exercise parameters compared to their peers who did not use nicotine, even after adjusting for age, sex and race/ethnicity,” reports lead author of the study, Christina M. Hughey, M.D., a fellow in cardiovascular medicine at UW Health.

Overall, the team found that the negative cardiovascular health among those who vaped was similar to what doctors see among long-time smokers. Even though the average e-cigarette user in the studies was much younger (27.4 years old) in comparison to the average smoker (42), those who vaped displayed similar levels of poor heart health compared to people who have smoked for nearly two decades!

The team is presenting its findings at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2022.

Source: StudyFinds

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[reposted by] Jim Liebelt

Jim is Senior Writer, Editor and Researcher for HomeWord. Jim has 40 years of experience as a youth and family ministry specialist, having served over the years as a pastor, author, consultant, mentor, trainer, college instructor, and speaker. Jim’s HomeWord culture blog also appears on and Jim and his wife Jenny live in Quincy, MA.

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