Research Suggests E-Cigarettes May be as Harmful to Cardiovascular Health as Regular Cigarettes

Oct 9, 2018

Research from West Virginia University School of Medicine suggests that if teenagers vape into adulthood, the cardiovascular effects may be as bad as if they’d smoked cigarettes.

E-cigarettes are gaining popularity among younger consumers with flavors like blue raspberry, birthday cake and root beer float. But almost all e-cigarettes contain a base solution that often includes nicotine. 

Using mice as subjects, WVU School of Medicine researchers exposed the subjects to an e-cigarette solution for the human equivalent of 25 years.

The researchers found that chronic exposure to e-cigarette vapor stiffened the aorta (the body’s main artery) 2.5 times more than the regular aging process did in a vape- or smoke-free environment. In comparison, cigarette smoke caused a 2.8-fold increase.

Aortic stiffness is an early warning sign of cardiac and vascular-related diseases.

The research was published earlier this year in the Journal of Applied Physiology.

Appalachia Health News is a project of West Virginia Public Broadcasting, with support from the Marshall Health, Charleston Area Medical Center and WVU Medicine.