A new study adds to mounting evidence that the use of electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes), or vaping, has increased in recent years among U.S. adults, with nearly 1 in 20 reporting current use of e-cigarettes, according to research presented at the American College of Cardiology's Annual Scientific Session Together with World Congress of Cardiology (ACC.20/WCC). In addition, two studies examining blood samples suggest e-cigarette exposure is roughly equivalent to tobacco smoke in terms of promoting oxidative stress that can lead to blood vessel damage and heart disease.
The first study, based on a survey of more than 930,000 U.S. adults, found nearly 29,000 people identified as current e-cigarette users, which translates to about 10.8 million U.S. adults. The proportion of survey respondents reporting current e-cigarette use rose from 4.3% in 2016 to 4.8% in 2018.
While an increase of 0.5% over three years may not sound like a large increase, that's a lot of [new] e-cigarette users once you extrapolate out to the overall population. Based on our findings, I think the trend is only going to go upward, but we don't know yet what the long-term health effects are." Mahmoud Al Rifai, MD, MPH, a cardiology fellow at Baylor College of Medicine and the study's lead author
For this study, researchers analyzed data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, a large phone-based survey conducted annually for more than 35 years that is designed to be representative of the U.S. adult population. Survey participants who said they used e-cigarettes every day or on some days were counted as current e-cigarette users.
While vaping rates rose across the overall population from 2016-2018, the increase was particularly pronounced in certain groups. Current e-cigarette use increased from 3.3% to 4.3% among women; from 3.9% to 5.2% among adults 45-54 years old; and from 5.2% to 7.9% among former smokers. Vaping also rose dramatically among users of smokeless tobacco products, from 9.2% in 2016 to 16.2% in 2018. Related Stories
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