COVID-Related Study Fails to Differentiate Between Smoking and Vaping 

A new study looking for a possible relationship between smoking and/or smoking and the severity of COVID-19 symptoms, fails to make a distinction between the two products. 

In line with countless public health experts, Alan R Boobis of the Imperial College London had recently spoken of the chemicals found in e-cigarettes, such as propylene glycol and/or vegetable glycerine (glycerol), pointing out that they are relatively non‐toxic at the levels present when inhaled over the short to medium term.

Most importantly he added, the risk from these compounds is minimal when compared to the risks from the toxins found in combustible cigarettes. Besides the minimized risk to self, he explained, in comparison to smoking vaping also minimizes risks to bystanders. Boobis added that the long‐term effects and consequences of repeated exposure to vaping are still unknown, however, given that the risk from smoking is absolute, switching is still a step in the right direction.

Sadly, a new study published in PLOS ONE, a peer-reviewed, open access scientific journal published by the Public Library of Science, has ignored this scientific data. Based on data from the American Heart Association’s COVID-19 CVD Registry, the study analyzed data on people over 18 years of age who were hospitalized with COVID-19 in 107 registry-participating hospitals across the nation between January 2020 to March 2021.

The research team found that people who reported smoking or vaping prior to their hospitalization for COVID-19 were more likely than non-users to experience severe symptoms and complications, including death.

In contrast, countless studies reported that nicotine consumption acted as a protective factor against contracting the virus. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have shown that smokers represented just 1.3% of COVID-19 cases analyzed, while America’s adult smoking rate is at 13.7%. Similarly, a review of Chinese data published in the European Journal of Internal Medicine had reported that “active smoking does not apparently seem to be significantly associated with enhanced risk of progressing towards severe disease in COVID-19.”

The correlation between smoking and the susceptibility of contracting SARS-CoV-2
Another study conducted in a large French university hospital, between March and April 2020, aimed to determine the possible correlation of daily smoking, with the susceptibility of contracting the SARS-CoV-2 infection.

The researchers had estimated the rates of daily current smokers among COVID-19-infected patients and compared them to the rates of daily current smokers within the general French population, after controlling the data for sex and age.

The compiled data had indicated that the daily smokers’ rate amongst COVID-19 patients was at 5.3%, whilst within the general French population, the rate of daily smokers rate was of 25.4%. These findings had led the researchers to conclude that daily smokers have a significantly lower probability of developing symptomatic or a severe SARS-CoV-2 infection, when compared to the general population.