According to the study, chemicals in cigarette smoke narrow arteries as they get mixed in with fatty deposits and can increase the risk of a life-threatening blockage.
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Flow-mediate dilation scores have been closely linked to the long-term risk of heart attacks and stroke. The results of the study show risk scores as follows:
- Healthy nonsmokers had a score of 7.7%
- Smokers had a score of 5.5%
- Those who switched to nicotine e-cigarettes for a month had a score of 6.7%
Researchers stressed that more research is needed, and the study does not conclude that vaping is safe. The AJC previously reported that health authorities have suggested Americans refrain from e-cigarettes until more is known about their link to respiratory illnesses.
"The key take-home is these devices are not completely safe and should not be tried by non-smokers or children,” said Jacob George, one of the researchers. "We now have clear evidence they're less harmful than tobacco cigarettes."