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Heart attack risk doubles for e-cigarette users

Gorkha Post

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Daily use of e-cigarettes can nearly double the odds of a heart attack, according to a new analysis of a survey of nearly 70,000 people, led by researchers at UC San Francisco.

In addition, the research also found that dual use of e-cigarettes and conventional cigarettes — the most common use pattern among e-cigarette users — appears to be more dangerous than using either product alone.

It increases the odds of a heart attack by 4.6 times, according to researchers at the University of California San Francisco, who published their findings in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine on Wednesday.

The study was the first to examine the relationship between e-cigarette use and heart attacks.

The risk of heart attack, however, drops immediately after people stop smoking or refrain from using e-cigarettes.

“Most adults who use e-cigarettes continue to smoke cigarettes,” Dr. Stanton Glantz, a UCSF professor of medicine and director of the UCSF Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education, said in a press release.

“While people may think they are reducing their health risks, we found that the heart attack risk of e-cigarettes adds to the risk of smoking cigarettes,” Dr. Stanton added.

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E-cigarettes deliver lower levels of carcinogens than conventional cigarettes, however both contain ultrafine particles and other toxins that have been linked to increased cardiovascular and non-cancer lung disease risks.

Researchers analyzed medical data on 69,452 smokers aged 18 and older who participated in the National Health Interview Survey in 2014 and 2016. The US Census Bureau conducts the surveys.

Of 9,352 current and former e-cigarette users in the study, 3.6 percent had experienced a heart attack at some point. The highest percentage — 6.1 percent — was among those who used e-cigarettes daily.

One quarter of the 2,259 people who currently used e-cigarettes were former conventional smokers — and about 66 percent of current e-cigarette users were also current cigarette smokers.

The total odds of a heart attack were about the same for those who continued to smoke cigarettes daily and those who switched to daily e-cigarette use.

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Ovary removals linked to increased risk of kidney failure

Raghu Kshitiz

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Women who have their ovaries removed before menopause may find themselves at higher risk for chronic kidney disease, a new study by the Mayo Clinic has suggested.

Risk can go up more than 7 percent for some women, according to the study that looked specifically at more than 1,600 premenopausal women living in and around Rochester over the span of 14 years.

Researchers believe the reason behind it is the drop in estrogen levels that follows the procedure.

“This is the first study that has shown an important link between estrogen deprivation in younger women and kidney damage,” said study senior author Dr. Walter Rocca, a neurologist and epidemiologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.

Though the study did not prove cause and effect, women considering having their ovaries removed should be aware of this potentially serious risk, particularly if they aren’t at high risk for ovarian and breast cancer, the researchers added.

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While other studies have already shown removing ovaries at too young of an age can increase a wide variety of chronic diseases and mortality, this study adds chronic kidney failure to that list.

Chronic kidney disease occurs when the kidneys are damaged and can’t filter the blood as well as they should. If the kidneys fail, patients must undergo dialysis and a kidney transplant.

Finding the overall kidney failure risk in women under 50 who had not had their ovaries taken out is 13 percent. That number jumps to 20 percent for those with them removed.

Still, the exact correlation between ovaries producing estrogen and kidney strength remains unknown.

Previous studies have shown that the female hormone estrogen has a protective effect on the kidneys. In this latest study, researchers investigated how the removal of both ovaries affected the kidney function of women who had not yet experienced menopause.

The findings were published Sept 19 in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

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