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Nicotine and Heart Disease

February 6, 2021


Sometimes patients who smoke come to me and go “doctor, I cut back on my smoking.” And I tell them, well, it’s like, if you came to me and said, I use a machete to cut myself, and the next time I asked you, how are you doing? You said, I’m starting to use a pocket knife. You’re still damaging yourself. And whether you’re smoking or vaping or using other nicotine products, you’re still going to cause problems. Obviously, if you’re a smoker, you got to quit smoking, but vaping is no better alternative. We’ve seen many patients who vape who’ve had severe lung disease, some died, some had near deathly experience, but those that had bad pneumonias never recover fully. So it’s really important that you realize that the best thing to do is to avoid cigarettes, vaping and nicotine in general, unless you’re using the nicotine to take the edge off for a temporarily period so that you can quit smoking. Nicotine is bad in that even without the other products in cigarettes that are all the carcinogens and all the smoke and other agents. Nicotine itself can cause spasm of the arteries of the heart. Nicotine can cause an increase in the heart rate and an increase in blood pressure. All of these are bad for the heart in the long term.

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