London: Smokers with asthma who switch to vaping found significant improvement and fewer respiratory infections, according to a study.
The study, published in the Journal of Addiction Research & Therapy provided sufficient information to suggest that vaping does not increase infection rates and may in fact lead to a decrease in infections.
For the study, data was collected through online survey of 941 respondents who switched to vaping for at least two months and assessed subjective changes in the respiratory symptoms.
The results showed that 66 per cent of respondents reported an improvement in respiratory symptoms, 29 per cent reported no change and five per cent reported worsening.
"There is no doubt that e-cigarettes are much safer than conventional cigarettes, but smokers are still led to believe that they are dangerous. This misinformation includes a misreported study on rats that claimed that vaping may increase vulnerability to infections," said Peter Hajek, Professor at the Queen Mary University of London.
Some previous cell and animal studies have been interpreted as suggesting that vaping may increase vulnerability to infection, but these studies did not use realistic exposure levels.
Human trials have reported no significant adverse respiratory effects associated with e-cigarette use for up to 1.5 years.
The researchers said that it is not surprising that the survey respondents noticed improvements in their respiratory health. This is because smoking increases susceptibility to respiratory infections and stopping smoking can be expected to have a positive effect.
In addition to this, vaping may also provide some antimicrobial protection through the e-liquid ingredient propylene glycol, though further evidence is needed to confirm this.