Since the start of the pandemic, there has been speculation about the link between vaping and coronavirus. As the cases of young vapers with coronavirus were beginning to crop up the researchers from Stanford University found that among the young people tested, those who vape were five to seven times more likely to contract coronavirus than those who didn’t use e-cigarettes.
The study was based on an online survey in which 4,351 young people aged between 13 and 24 in the US took part. The survey asked questions about using traditional cigarettes and e-cigarettes, any symptoms related to covid19, and getting tested or being diagnosed for the coronavirus. It was found that the young people who enjoy using both traditional and e-cigarettes were seven times more likely to be infected with the virus than people who have never used either of them.
Professor of Pediatrics and director of research at Stanford University in California Bonnie Halpern-Felsher said that she thought that she would find some relationship between vaping and coronavirus but did not expect to see a five to seven times more likely relationship. She added that the virus could also be transmitted due to the sharing of these products, touching face more and more, and possibly breathing in droplets containing the virus through aerosols of an e-cigarette. She believes that there is a chance all of the above are contributing to the transmission.
The study was based on surveys from anonymous online users, so it has some limitations because the respondents may not have given honest answers. Halpern-Felsher believes that this is a call for young people to stop using e-cigarettes or any inhaling product as they hurt their lungs. She also says that it is a message for parents to talk to their teens and is also a message for the health workers.
A researcher at the University of Wisconsin Center for Tobacco Research and Intervention and a pediatric hospitalist at UW Health Dr. Brian Williams called the findings of the study concerning and believed it gives added motivation to the smokers to quit smoking. He said with this study the researchers were looking for a signal that if there is a relation between vaping and coronavirus. He believes that the study has given a pretty strong signal about the link.
Around one-third of the young people have some sort of risk factor that makes them more vulnerable to getting severely ill if they get infected with the coronavirus and smoking is the strongest of those risk factors among the age group.
Researchers from the University of California and San Francisco analyzed and reviewed previously published studies on the link between covid19 and smoking. Those studies involved around 11,590 coronavirus patients. They found that around 30% of patients who had a history of smoking experienced their illness become more severe as compared to 17.6% of non-smoking patients.
Lawmakers have written a letter to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to clear the market of e-cigarettes temporarily for the period of the coronavirus. Raja Krishnamoorthi chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform’s Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy and the person who sent the letter to FDA said the links between vaping and coronavirus are true and vapers as young as 13 are driving the spread of coronavirus threatening the health and safety of people of all ages.