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Vaping study shows e-cigs improve systolic, diastolic blood pressure

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According to scientific research, smoking can increase the heart rate and both systolic and diastolic blood pressure while escalating the symptoms of hypertension. A new vaping study conducted by co-authors Konstantinos Farsalinos and Richard Polosa suggests that switching to vaping can help.

Farsalinos is a highly regarded cardiac specialist from the Onassis Cardiac Surgery Centre in Athens, Greece, and Polosa is a published author on tobacco harm reduction from the University of Catalina in Italy. This team of physicians conducted a vaping study that lasted a full year, resulting in some rather remarkable conclusions.

Switching to vaping helps reduce blood pressure in smokers

The Farsalinos and Polosa vaping study is entitled Effect of continuous smoking reduction and abstinence on blood pressure and heart rate in smokers switching to electronic cigarettes. The report is located in the Internal and Emergency Medicine journal. The scientists began their research by evaluating data compiled from 211 participants involved in another vape study from 2013, the ECLAT study, with a main objective of determining if vaping is an effective smoking cessation method.

  • Participants of the Farsalinos and Polosa study were categorized into three groups.
    • High-nicotine vapers
    • Low-nicotine vapers
    • Zero-nicotine vapers
  • A second classification was assigned to each participant based on their personal vaping habits.
    • Quitters: Former smokers who now vape 100% of the time.
    • Failures: Current smokers who sometimes vape sporadically, perhaps 50% of the time or less. This group also includes smokers who tried vaping and were unable to reduce their tobacco consumption to any significant degree.
    • Reducers: Participants who admit to dual use, vaping at least 50% of the time and smoking the remaining percentage.
  • The researchers monitored and evaluated certain biomarkers of each participant both before, during, and after the study took place. The biomarkers include:
    • Heart rate
    • Systolic blood pressure
    • Diastolic blood pressure
  • Each of the participants was asked to vape using the same three-piece device with disposable cartridges.
  • Out of the 211-member control group, 145 exhibited symptoms of hypertension at the beginning of the study.
  • 66 exhibited signs of elevated blood pressure or increased heart rates or both.

What the scientists discovered is that those participants who did not exhibit signs of high blood pressure, increased heart rate, or hypertension at the onset of the study experienced no significant changes in the related biomarkers. Meanwhile, those participants who did show predispositions experienced dramatic positive changes in all related categories after switching to vaping. Their rates of change were directly proportional to the amount of daily vaping related to classification of quitter, reducer, or failure.

“When the same analysis was repeated in 66 subjects with elevated BP at baseline, a substantial reduction in systolic BP was observed at week 52 compared to baseline (132.4 ± 12.0 vs. 141.2 ± 10.5 mmHg, p < 0.001), with a significant effect found for smoking phenotype classification. After adjusting for weight change, gender and age, reduction in systolic BP from baseline at week 52 remains associated significantly with both smoking reduction and smoking abstinence. In conclusion, smokers who reduce or quit smoking by switching to e-cigarettes may lower their systolic BP in the long term, and this reduction is apparent in smokers with elevated BP. The current study adds to the evidence that quitting smoking with the use of e-cigarettes does not lead to higher BP values, and this is independently observed whether e-cigarettes are regularly used or not.”

Doctors Farsalinos and Polosa also took into account the age, gender, weight, and baseline levels of each of the biomarkers when evaluating their data. Both co-authors have been known to refute multiple anti-vaping studies in the past whose researchers had failed to consider such principles in the past. The Farsalinos and Polosa vaping study is one of a chosen few that public health agencies around the world now consider one of the foremost in its field. 

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