How Vaping Can Help Patients Recover Faster

man with short trimmed beard wearing black shirt vaping with white sheets in the background

Vaping has been a subject of intense debate within medical and public health circles. While the full spectrum of its impacts remains under investigation, emerging studies indicate that vaping may offer certain benefits in aiding patient recovery in specific contexts.

In Canada, where vaping has become a prevalent alternative, the popularity of this controversial practice is evident in the widespread use of Canada’s most popular vaping juice.

How Patients Can Benefit from Vaping

One of the areas where vaping shows potential is in helping individuals to quit smoking traditional cigarettes.
A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) found that e-cigarettes were more effective for smoking cessation than nicotine-replacement therapies when both methods were accompanied by behavioral support.

The 52-week trial highlighted that 18% of e-cigarette users were able to stop smoking traditional cigarettes, compared to 9.9% of participants using other nicotine replacement products.

The implication here is profound; by reducing the harmful effects associated with tobacco combustion, patients recovering from smoking-related diseases may benefit from switching to vaping as a less harmful alternative.

In the realm of surgical recovery, vaping is being explored as a less harmful option for patients who are smokers.

Given the well-documented impacts of tobacco smoke on wound healing, a shift to vaping could theoretically reduce complications post-surgery.

A 2016 study in the journal Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery suggested that while smoking is associated with a higher risk of complications following surgery, the use of e-cigarettes may have a less detrimental effect.

The researchers postulated that the absence of smoke and tar inhaled through vaping could lead to better outcomes for recovering patients, although further research is necessary to establish a causal relationship.

Another potential benefit is seen in chronic pain management. Opioids, the most common medication for severe pain, have a high risk of addiction and other side effects.

A 2020 research review in the Journal of Pain Research indicated that certain substances that can be vaped, such as CBD, may offer pain relief for some patients. As a method of administration, vaping allows for rapid absorption which can provide quick relief for patients in pain.

This can be particularly beneficial for patients recovering from injuries or surgeries, offering a potential reduction in the use of opioids and associated risks.

Furthermore, a pilot study conducted in 2021 by researchers at the University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust explored the use of vaping devices for preoperative patients. The study suggested that patients who switched to vaping before surgery showed improved pulmonary function in the immediate postoperative period compared to those who continued smoking.

This improved respiratory function can be crucial in speeding up recovery times and reducing the risk of postoperative pulmonary complications.

woman with blonde dark brown hair wearing white tshirt, sitting, smoking and using her mobile phone

Final Thoughts

While vaping is not without controversy, there is a growing body of research suggesting that it could have a role in aiding faster patient recovery in various medical contexts.

From facilitating smoking cessation to potentially reducing post-surgical complications and aiding in pain management, vaping presents an intriguing alternative that merits further exploration.

As always, individual patient circumstances and medical guidance should dictate the appropriateness of vaping in a recovery regimen, and continued research is vital in fully understanding the benefits and risks involved.

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