Vapers may be five times more likely to contract coronavirus, study shows

Use of e-cigarettes may significantly increase risk of contracting coronavirus, new study shows.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,


Stanford University medical students conducted a study among 4,300 teens and young adults across the US, showing that electronic cigarettes, also known as e-cigarettes, may raise a person's chance of contracting coronavirus.

The study, published in the Journal of Adolescent Health last week, included participants aged 13-24 who answered, via telephone survey, questions about their cigarette and e-cigarette use, as well as whether they had experienced symptoms of coronavirus, had been tested for it, or had been diagnosed with coronavirus.

Among those who had been tested for COVID-19, those who had ever used electronic cigarettes were five times more likely to have received a positive test than those who did not vape. In addition, those who had both vaped and smoked regular cigarettes within the past 30 days were nearly seven times more likely to be diagnosed with the disease than those who did not smoke or vape.

In addition, those who both smoked and vaped were five times more likely than non-users to report experiencing COVID-19 symptoms at the time of the survey, regardless of whether or not they had been tested for the virus.

In a press release, Stanford Medicine quoted study authors Stanford Medicine Professor of Pediatrics Bonnie Halpern-Felsher, PhD, and postdoctoral scholar Shivani Mathur Gaiha, PhD.

According to Halpern-Felsher, the study's senior author, "Teens and young adults need to know that if you use e-cigarettes, you are likely at immediate risk of COVID-19 because you are damaging your lungs."

She added: "Now is the time. We need the FDA to hurry up and regulate these products. And we need to tell everyone: If you are a vaper, you are putting yourself at risk for COVID-19 and other lung disease."

Lead author Gaiha added: "Young people may believe their age protects them from contracting the virus or that they will not experience symptoms of COVID-19, but the data show this isn’t true among those who vape."

"This study tells us pretty clearly that youth who are using vapes or are dual-using [vapes and cigarettes] are at elevated risk, and it’s not just a small increase in risk, it’s a big one."

Live Science noted that the study shows only correlation, not causation, but emphasized that in addition to asking participants about coronavirus symptoms, the survey also included questions on their compliance with social distancing and shelter-in-place orders, the rate of coronavirus diagnoses in their state, age, sex, race or ethnicity, BMI, and socioeconomic status.