In the letter, the subcommittee asked Hahn to confirm before August 18 – for a week – whether the FDA would temporarily delete the market for all e-cigarettes.
Considering that the world still doesn̵7;t know much about the new coronavirus causing Covid-19 – and the recently emerging vaping trend – there’s not much information about whether the two can affect each other or be linked. how.
But some new research has begun to explore possible associations, especially around that vapers may have a harder time fighting a coronavirus infection and may be more susceptible to disease.
‘We think we’ll see some kind of relationship’
According to a new study referenced in Krishnamoorthi’s letter, the likelihood of being diagnosed with Covid-19 is five times higher among young people who have ever used e-cigarettes.
Research based on an online survey also found that young people with a history of both e-cigarettes and traditional cigarettes were seven times more likely to be diagnosed with Covid-19 disease than those with someone who has never used either product.
Halpern-Felsher said: “About half of the samples were in place – because we asked for that – but that doesn’t mean they’re not in the backyard with a friend who is sharing a vaping product. “The risk of being diagnosed with Covid-19 may be related to exposure to coronavirus when sharing the product, touching the face more, or being able to breathe in these products,” said Halpern-Felsher. Drops containing the virus through the aerosol of e-cigarettes. More research is needed.
“We don’t know. These are theories,” said Halpern-Felsher. “I really think that’s all of the above.”
The study included data on 4,351 young people aged 13 to 24 in the United States who completed an online survey in May.
The survey asked them questions about their use of e-cigarettes and traditional cigarettes, along with Covid-19-related symptoms, getting tested and diagnosed with the disease.
Halpern-Felsher said of the study results: “We have seen teenagers who are vaping with asthma. We have seen seizures. We have seen bronchitis, pneumonia, hospitalization, atelectasis. and now we are seeing Covid “.
The study comes with a number of limitations, including that it relies on self-reported reports from anonymous online survey responses – which can be prone to bias if respondents don’t. honest answer.
Overall, Halpern-Felsher says there is a message for young people and health care providers in the survey results.
“This is a real call for teenagers to stop using e-cigarettes – stop using any inhaler product – stop putting things in their lungs that damage their lungs,” she said. “There is a message for healthcare providers and that is one message for parents: talk to your teen.”
“When you do a study like this, you are trying to find a signal. Is there an association between e-cigarette use and smoking and the Covid-19 diagnosis? And it looks like it.” they received a pretty strong signal, “said Williams, who was not involved in the study. An area that currently needs more research, he said, is why there might be this link between vaping and Covid-19.
“Is that something of a ritual actually putting your hands to your face? Are you carrying germs on your face? Is it the result of sharing vaping equipment or sharing cigarettes? Is that something about how smoking or how vaping causes inflammation in your airways or affects your immune system so it’s more susceptible to infection? “Williams said. “Those things are not clear at this point.”
While many questions remain to be answered, a separate recent study explored how many young people may be at this increased risk of Covid due to vaping or other risk factors.
Smoking is a risk factor
Researchers found that 32% of the total studied population was medically vulnerable to Covid-19. However, when the group of participants smoking cigarettes or e-cigarettes was removed from the analysis, the medical vulnerability percentage was reduced by half, to 16%.
“This difference between estimates is mainly due to a large proportion of young people reporting that they have smoked in the past 30 days (1/10) and used e-cigarettes for 30 days (1),” the researchers wrote. in 14). in their study. “In contrast, relatively few young adults reported medical conditions identified by the CDC as causing a risk of serious illness.”
Research shows that in the entire study population, young men are at an increased risk of serious Covid-19 disease. Although many women report having asthma and other immune conditions, higher male smoking rates overcame this. However, looking only at nonsmokers, women are at higher risk.
For that paper, other researchers from the University of California, San Francisco, reviewed and analyzed 19 previously published studies of the association between smoking and Covid-19. These studies included data on a total of 11,590 Covid-19 patients. There are no studies evaluating the use of e-cigarettes.
When reviewing those studies, researchers found that 29.8% of Covid-19 patients with a history of smoking had experienced a stage of their Covid-19 disease progressing to a more severe illness compared to just a few. 17.6% of patients did not smoke.
In their paper, the researchers urged doctors and public health experts to collect data on smoking and e-cigarette use as part of a clinical evaluation among Covid patients.
CNN’s Naomi Thomas contributed to this report.