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Vaping Linked to Earlier Onset of Asthma – MedNews

Medically reviewed by Carmen Pope, BPharm. Last updated on May 17, 2024.

By Ernie Mundell HealthDay Reporter

FRIDAY, May 17, 2024 — People with asthma who vape tend to develop the respiratory disease earlier in life than folks who never vaped, new research shows.

Overall, asthmatic adults who said they’d vaped over the past month were over three times as likely to have developed asthma relatively early in life (before the age of 27) compared to folks who never vaped, said a team reporting the findings May 17 in the journal JAMA Network Open.

According to the researchers, “harmful chemical ingredients found in electronic nicotine delivery systems have been found to affect pulmonary function and may have the potential to affect respiratory health,” perhaps including the triggering of asthma.

The study was led by Adriana Pérez, of the department of biostatistics and data science at the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston.

Her team noted that smoking has long been linked to an upped risk for asthma, but studies regarding links between vaping and asthma are lacking.

By 2021, more than 11 million U.S. adults said they were vaping regularly, Perez’s team said, and by 2022 over 2.5 million U.S. high school students were doing so.

Could all that vaping be speeding the emergence of asthma among Americans?

To find out, Pérez’ team used data from a large study focused on tobacco and health outcomes (including asthma) involving almost 25,000 adults and high school-age teens, selected to represent the U.S. population as a whole.

Data was collected in eight separate time periods between 2013 and 2021.

“Adults older than 20 years in 2020 were measured using an adult telephone survey and their data were also included to evaluate the age of asthma onset,” Pérez’ team explained.

Participants were also asked at each wave of the study if they had vaped over the past 30 days.

The researchers found that adults who answered “yes” to that question had a 252% higher odds of developing asthma early in life versus non-vapers.

The study found no such correlation between vaping and early-onset asthma among youth, although they stressed that that “could be due to a lack of statistical power” in the data.

If vaping is a potential factor encouraging early onset asthma, then outreach is “needed to educate the public, protect public health, prevent adverse health outcomes and motivate users to stop,” Pérez’ team concluded.

Given rising rates of vaping among the young, better screening for asthma at younger ages may also be necessary, the researchers said.


  • JAMA Network Open, May 17, 2024

Disclaimer: Statistical data in medical articles provide general trends and do not pertain to individuals. Individual factors can vary greatly. Always seek personalized medical advice for individual healthcare decisions.

© 2024 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

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