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New Study Shows E-cigarettes Cause Damage to Gum Tissue

By Craig Smith
February 3, 2017

Upload: September 2, 2016A University of Rochester (UR) Medical Center study suggests that electronic cigarettes are as equally damaging to gums and teeth as conventional cigarettes.

The study, published in Oncotarget, was led by Irfan Rahman, Ph.D. professor of Environmental Medicine at the UR School of Medicine and Dentistry, and is the first scientific study to address e-cigarettes and their detrimental effect on oral health on cellular and molecular levels.

"We showed that when the vapors from an e-cigarette are burned, it causes cells to release inflammatory proteins, which in turn aggravate stress within cells, resulting in damage that could lead to various oral diseases," said Rahman. "How much and how often someone is smoking e-cigarettes will determine the extent of damage to the gums and oral cavity."

Rahman said more research, including long-term and comparative studies, are needed to better understand the health effects of e-cigarettes. He also urged manufacturers to disclose all the materials and chemicals used in e-cigarettes to help consumers understand the potential dangers.

The study was funded by the National Institutes of Health. Study collaborators include first author Isaac K. Sundar, UR Department of Environmental Medicine, Fawad Javed, Department of General Dentistry, Eastman Institute for Oral Health at UR, Georgios E. Romanos, Department of Periodontology, School of Dental Medicine, Stony Brook University and Irfan Rahman, Department of Environmental Medicine at UR.

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