Researchers at the University of Louisville (UofL) concluded that electronic cigarettes (e-liquids) promote arrhythmias and electrical dysfunction in the heart.
The US university study, carried out at the Christina Lee Brown Enviromet Institute, found that exposure to e-cigarette aerosols can cause cardiac arrhythmias in animal models, both in the form of premature and skipped heartbeats.
“Our findings demonstrate that exposure short term to the electronic cigarettes can destabilize the heart rhythm through specific chemicals inside e-liquids,” said Alex Carll, an assistant professor in the UofL Department of Physiology who led the study.
These findings suggest that the use of e-cigarettes with certain flavors or solvent vehicles It can alter the electrical conduction of the heart and cause arrhythmias. These effects could increase the risk of atrial or ventricular fibrillation. and sudden cardiac arrest.
Experts point out that this study tested the cardiac impacts of e-cigarette aerosols inhaled only from the two main e-liquid ingredients (nicotine-free propylene glycol and vegetable glycerin) or flavored e-liquids containing nicotine.
Subsequently, details the university located in the state of Kentucky, the team of scientists discovered that with all the aerosols of electronic cigarettes, the animals’ heart rate slowed down during smoke puff exposures and accelerated afterward as heart rate variability decreased.
This, they explain, indicates fight-or-flight stress responses. Additionally, e-cigarette puffs of a menthol-flavored or propylene glycol-flavored e-liquid caused ventricular arrhythmias and other conduction irregularities in the heart.
The results of this study were published on October 25 in the scientific journal Nature and was conducted in collaboration with Daniel Conklin and Aruni Bhatnagar, professors in the UofL Division of Environmental Medicine.
The university notes that this work adds to a growing body of research on the potential toxicity and health impacts of e-cigarettes reported by the American Heart Association’s Center for Tobacco Addiction and Regulation, in which the UofL collaborates as a flagship institute.
Professor Alex Carll said the findings of this study are important because they provide new evidence that e-cigarette use could interfere with normal heart rhythms, something we didn’t know about before,” said Bhatnagar. “This is very worrying given the rapid growth in e-cigarette useparticularly among the young.
The University of Louisville explains that as e-cigarette use has grown across the United States, the potential benefits and harms of vaping have been debated.
The UofL notes that since vaping does not involve combustion, it exposes users and bystanders to little or no carbon monoxide, tar, or nitrosamines that cause cancer compared to conventional cigarettes. However, electronic cigarettes can release aldehydes, particulates, and nicotine at levels comparable to combustible cigarettes.
In addition, the North American house of studies warned that although vaping could help smokers to quit combustible cigarettes, the attractiveness and addiction of electronic cigarettes can encourage young people to vape in medium of unknown long-term risks or start smoking.
As additional data, experts identify that more than 25% of high school students and 10% of high school students in the neighboring country reported having used electronic cigarettes before the pandemic.