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E-cigarettes Help Asthmatic Smokers

A new studypublished in the International Journal of Environmental Research and PublicHealth indicates that asthmatic smokers who use e-cigarettes experience animprovement in their asthma symptoms and lung function, even if they remaindual users, according to a leading health expert.

The study (See: Polosa R, et al. "Effect of smoking abstinence andreduction in asthmatic smokers switching to electronic cigarettes: evidence forharm reversal." International Journal of Environmental Research and PublicHealth2014; doi:10.3390/ijerph110504965.) was the subject of a blog by Dr.Michael Siegel, a professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences,Boston University School of Public Health.

"The study examined 18 smokers with significantasthma who switched to electronic cigarettes," said Siegel. "Ten ofthe patients switched completely and eight became dual users (both smoking andusing e-cigarettes). Among the dual users, the average cigarette consumptiondropped from 22.4 to 3.9 cigarettes per day.

"After one year follow-up, both the ex-smokers anddual users experienced a significant improvement in asthma symptoms and lungfunction, especially small airways obstruction. Although the improvements inlung function were small, the improvements in asthma symptoms were clinicallyrelevant."

Siegel said that while the study was preliminary becauseof the small sample size, it demonstrated that for smokers who were unable toquit smoking using traditional therapies, the use of e-cigarettes might be aviable alternative to help them quit or substantially cut down and might resultin improved respiratory health symptoms. Enditem