E-cigarettes may make lungs susceptible to infection


Smoking e-cigarettes may make lungs slightly more vulnerable to infection, according to a US study.1

The research, which was carried out by several US universities, exposed mice to e-cigarette vapours daily for two weeks, and found that the effectiveness of their immune system to fight off infection had been lowered.

The mice who were exposed to e-cigarette vapour found it more difficult to shake off the flu infection they were given, compared with the comparison group who were exposed only to normal air instead of the e-cigarette vapour.

Context is important here however and despite these findings, it is widely agreed that e-cigarettes are far safer than smoking tobacco - but if you have any doubts or concerns remember that other options for gradually reducing your nicotine exposure include patches, gums and inhalers.

Reference:

1 Sussan TE, Gajghate S, Thimmulappa RK, et al. Exposure to Electronic Cigarettes Impairs Pulmonary Anti-Bacterial and Anti-Viral Defenses in a Mouse Model. PLOS One. Published online February 4 2015

News sources:

Vaping may not be as safe as smokers think, research suggests. The Guardian, February 4 2015

E-cigarettes 'increase the risk of flu and pneumonia'. The Independent, February 4 2015

E-cigarettes are 'NOT a safe alternative to smoking': Toxic chemicals harm the lungs and weaken the immune system, study claims. Mail Online, February 4 2015

E-Cigarettes Are Harmful To Lungs - Study. Sky News, February 5 2015

E-cigarettes are 'not a safe alternative'. ITV News, February 5 2015