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Study Finds Possible Link Between Vaping and Weakened Bones

A new study published in the American Journal of Medicine Open posits a 46% increase in the risk of broken bones brought about by vaping. Fractures to the hip, spine, and wrist were tracked in a research piece put out by Dr. Dayawa Agoons of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

The study pulls from the healthcare data of over 5,500 adults in the United States who also had data collected during a national health survey conducted in 2017.

Dr. Agoons is quick to note that the study does not prove causation and only seems to show a link between the two. “I’m seeing an association,” said the doctor. “I can’t really see if the hen came before the egg or the egg before the hen.”

One reason for the lack of clarity, as noted by Dr. Agoons himself, is that nicotine use in general has long-since been associated with an increased risk of bone breakage. And, since vaping and traditional smoking both involve the ingestion of nicotine, it’s logical to assume that they could both induce the same type of side effect. “At this moment,” he said, “one of our theories is that the same mechanism that happens in conventional cigarette smoking might be happening in electronic cigarettes as well.”

Dr. Agoons believes that his research should be used to start a conversation between doctors and their patients to discuss the risks of vaping and put to bed the notion that it is a harmless activity.