Just like a smoke filled room, an official consensus on the health effects of vaping is still a bit hazy. However, many new studies have substantial evidence supporting vaping’s adverse impact on the body. The vaping trend is steadily on the rise with a reported seven million active users worldwide in 2011 to 41 million in 2018. During vaping’s ‘humble’ beginnings, users saw this product as an alternative to smoking, admiring its “smokeless” appeal. But, as the smoke clears, vaping side effects have become more apparent – and more adverse.
Even though vaping is a relatively new concept, scientists and researchers have been quick to test the potential effects on the human body -with mice, of course. No humans have been sacrificed, but New York University researchers exposed 40 mice to e-cigarette vapor with nicotine over a 54-week period and 22.5% developed lung cancer, and 57.5% contracted precancerous bladder lesions.
Then, over a four-year period, but with only 20 mice and no nicotine in the vapor, researchers found that none of these mice developed cancer. According to Moon-Shong Tang, one of the leading researchers on e-cigarette vapor, these are “statistically very significant.” Data has only been collected for a few years, but there already is significant information coming forth from accredited professionals.
Within the last two weeks, the Center for Disease Control & Prevention confirmed that 1,479 Americans had been affected with a lung-related illness connected to vaping/e-cigarette use – while 26 have died from the vapor infections. Some of these infections have been linked to black market THC vaping cartridges, but many illnesses have been reported with nicotine use only as well.
One risk associated with vaping is bronchitis obliterans, aka popcorn lung. The condition causes scarring on the air sacs of the lungs, ultimately constricting airways. This irreversible disease is caused by inhaling diacetyl, a chemical that is found in many liquids of e-cigarettes/cartridges.
Vaping is a new trend and has only been prevalent over the last ten years. Overall, researchers indicate there are still many unknowns on how the chemicals affect the body. Therefore, it is recommended to understand the potential risks associated with vaping and make an informed decision to use, or not.
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Story Authored By: Joshua Konecke and Kevin Dohm
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