E-cigarettes linked to increased risk of heart attacks and strokes, study says

Nearly 11 million U.S. adults are using e-cigarettes

Scientists have previously cautioned about the dangers of e-cigarettes. Now they are concerned the products can increase your chances of having a heart attack or stroke, according to a new report.

» RELATED: Study: Teens may be inhaling cancer-causing chemicals in e-cigarettes

Researchers from the School of Medicine at the University of Kansas recently conducted a study to determine the link between e-cigarettes and risk of heart attack and stroke.

"There's a certain notion that e-cigarettes are harmless," coauthor Paul Ndunda told NPR. "But this study and previous other studies show that while they're less harmful than normal cigarettes, their use still comes with risks."

For the assessment, the team examined about 400,000 adults who participated in a 2016 national health survey, which asked the subjects about their health history and lifestyle habits, including smoking.

Of all the respondents, more than 66,000 reported they used e-cigarettes at least once, compared with non-users. Those who smoked the electronic product had a 71 percent higher risk of stroke, a 59 percent increased risk of heart attack and a 40 percent higher risk of heart disease, compared to nonusers.

Furthermore, the analysts discovered e-cigarette users were twice as likely to also smoke regular cigarettes.

The researchers noted their assessment did include some limitations. They said they could not distinguish between occasional and frequent e-cigarette users.

“It likely matters how much you're using, and we couldn't evaluate that here” Ndunda said.

And while the findings haven't been published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal, the team will present their results at the American Stroke Association's International Stroke Conference in Honolulu in February.

» RELATED: E-cigs outperform patches and gums in quit-smoking study

About the Author

Editors' Picks