Fri, Dec 9, 2016 | updated 09:22 AM IST

Teenagers resorting to e-cigarette may face serious lung health issues

Updated: Nov 18, 2016 11:13 IST

WashingtonD.C. [US], Nov. 18 (ANI): A recent research published in the American Thoracic Society's American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care indicates that e-cigarette smoking can lay substantial effect on young smokers' health even if they do not later become tobacco smokers.

The lead author of the research Rob McConnell along with his team reported an association between e-cigarette use and persistent cough, bronchitis and congestion or phlegm in the Southern California Children's Health Study.

"E-cigarettes are known to deliver chemicals toxic to the lungs, including oxidant metals, glycerol vapor, diketone flavoring compounds and nicotine," McConnell said.

"However, there has been little study on the chronic health effects of e-cigarettes. The Children's Health Study provided an opportunity to examine bronchitic symptoms common among smokers to see if the risk was also increased in users of e-cigarettes," he added.

The researchers analyzed responses to a 2014 questionnaire completed by 2,086 study participants.

Investigators categorized respondents as 'never e-cigarette users' (76 percent), 'past users' (more than 30 days earlier, 14.4 percent) and 'current users' (at least once within the past 30 days, 9.6 percent).

The study found that when compared to those who never tried e-cigarettes, the risk of the respiratory symptoms was approximately 85 percent higher among past users and double among current users

These associations remained statistically significant for past users after being adjusted for smoking and secondhand tobacco smoke exposure and socio-demographic factors.

The researchers also looked at wheeze, a narrowing of the airways often caused by an asthma exacerbation, but did not find a significant association with e-cigarettes after adjusting for the same confounding factors.

"The Food and Drug Administration recently banned the sale of e-cigarettes to children under 18 years, and California just prohibited sale to young adults under 21," McConnell said.

"Our results suggest that these regulations and an environment that discourages the initiation of any tobacco product may reduce the burden of chronic respiratory symptoms in youth. However, because e-cigarettes are relatively new, additional study is needed to fully understand their long-term effects," he concluded. (ANI)