Tobacco expert Brad Rodu debunks latest ‘vaping causes heart attacks’ study

The notorious Staunton Glantz has published yet another so-called vaping study which falsely concludes that e-cigarette usage dramatically increases the health risks of heart attacks.  According to the published findings, the harmful effects of vaping on the cardiovascular system are just as bad – if not worse – than those derived from smoking combustible tobacco products.  To be clear, Mr. Glantz’s opinions have been repeatedly disproved.

As far back as 2015, the United Kingdom’s Public Health England determined through extensive research that vaping is up to 95 percent less harmful than smoking.  Furthermore, after taking a deep dive into the Glantz study’s scientific protocols and experimental processes, tobacco control expert and professor of the University of Louisville in Kentucky Brad Rodu now calls the entire paper “false and invalid.”

Related Article:   What politicians aren’t telling you about vaping: Teen smoking rates at all-time lows

The Glantz paper co-authored by Dharma N. Bhatta and entitled Electronic Cigarette Use and Myocardial Infarction Among Adults in the US Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health is published in the Journal of the American Heart Association.  The research involved the monitoring of a cross‐sectional analysis of the cardiovascular systems of some 38 participants as they began engaging in e-cigarette usage.

According to the paper’s conclusions, “some‐day and every‐day e‐cigarette use is associated with increased risk for having myocardial infarction (heart attack)”  The co-authors also suggest that vaping should never be recommended as a less risky alternative to conventional smoking because both are equally as unhealthy with regards to heart health.

Rodu calls for immediate retraction of the Glantz-Bhatta study

According to Rodu, the researchers used scientific procedures that are “an indefensible breach of any reasonable standard for research.”  In a letter to the University of Iowa, the University of Michigan, Boston University, and the American Heart Association warning them to ignore the Glantz-Bhatta report, Rodu outlines the major fundamental problem with the study’s conclusions.

“The authors used the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health Wave 1 survey restricted dataset. But they failed to account for detailed information in that survey on (a) when participants were first told that they had a heart attack and (b) when participants first started using e-cigarettes. In fact, the majority (2) of the 38 current e-cigarette users were first told that they had a heart attack many years before they first started using e-cigarettes. In this group, the heart attacks preceded first e-cigarette use by almost a decade on average…

“The main findings from the Bhatta-Glantz study are false and invalid. Their analysis was an indefensible breach of any reasonable standard for research on association or causation. We urge you to take appropriate action on this article, including retraction.”

Earlier this month, Glantz also published yet another controversial study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine (AJPM) which made similar accusations that vaping increase the chances of incurring lung disease, specially COPD.  Both projects were widely publicized in major mainstream media, including CNN, USA Today, and NBC News.

Related Article:   No, vaping is NOT bad for the heart. In fact, research shows the exact opposite is true.

Dr. Michael Siegel, Professor of Public Health at Boston University, lambasted the report as “not even plausible” while noting that the development of COPD in smokers of combustible tobacco products often takes decades to materialize.  Staunton Glantz’s report suggests the respiratory disorder can appear in vapers within only a few months. 

For veteran vapers or current smokers considering a transition to vaping as a tobacco harm reduction tool, careful consideration should be given to the types of research articles and news sources consumed.  Just because a story appears on the nightly news or that a study is published in a fancy-sounding medical journal does not mean that it is indeed valid or accurate.  And anything co-authored by a Dr. Staunton Glantz is highly suspect, to be sure. 

Related Article:   Study saying vaping causes lung disease ‘not even plausible,’ says Siegel

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