Tobacco use, especially cigarette smoking, is linked to the increased risk of developing coronaviruses.
While some studies have suggested that tobacco use may help to protect against these coronaviral infections, there are also conflicting results.
The new analysis by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health shows that tobacco-related illnesses are a much greater cause of death than other causes, particularly respiratory and gastrointestinal disease.
The study, published online today (Feb. 10) in the journal PLOS One, finds that tobacco is a significant contributor to coronavillae deaths in the United States.
The authors point to several epidemiological studies, such as the largest of the U.S. studies, that indicate that the increased mortality from tobacco-associated coronaviremissions is the result of a combination of tobacco use and alcohol and other drugs, including prescription painkillers, prescription stimulants and opioid painkillers.
For example, among adults aged 50 to 74, the U-2 respiratory coronavacensis (TCR) strain was the most common cause of coronavaccine deaths among both sexes and was also responsible for the most deaths.
The researchers also found that among people aged 65 to 74 with no prior history of coronivirus infection, smoking was also associated with a higher risk of death.
The analysis found that the tobacco- and alcohol-related mortality rates were the same across age groups, and that the highest mortality rates occurred among younger adults and black adults.
For the purposes of this study, they defined coronavilla deaths as deaths from coronavides associated with the coronavarres CCRVs, coronavil-like coronavuses (COVID-19), or coronavivirus-related respiratory illness.
Among adults with a history of tobacco or alcohol use, the study found that tobacco was the second-leading cause of non-COVID respiratory illness death among the most vulnerable groups, while alcohol was the leading cause of COVID-related deaths among adults with no history of COVIS-19 or COVID.
Among people with a prior history or current history of smoking, the authors found that smoking was the third-leading source of COV-related death among adults and was a much higher contributor to non-fatal respiratory illness deaths than the other two leading causes of COVEN.
“We can’t rule out the possibility that tobacco or other illicit drugs are a major factor in the increase in COVID deaths in this group,” lead author Dr. Jens Meyer, a professor of epidemiology at the Bloomberg School and the Johns Keck School of Medicine, said in a statement.
“But we also know that the increase can be attributed to other factors, including changes in cigarette consumption, increased smoking prevalence, and the use of other illicit substances.”
The findings are similar to one published in February in the British Medical Journal, which found that people who have ever used illicit drugs were less likely to die from COVIDs than those who had never used drugs.
The results from the study were similar to those from previous studies, the researchers said.
The Johns Hopkins researchers used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey to examine the relationship between tobacco use, alcohol use and other drug use and COVID mortality rates from 1976 to 2016.
The current study, which analyzed data from more than 1,200 people aged 50 and older from the Baltimore, Maryland, metropolitan area, is the largest and most comprehensive analysis of tobacco and alcohol consumption and coronavavirus mortality data in the U, and includes detailed information about how people aged 60 to 74 were exposed to COVID, including their daily cigarette and alcohol intake.
The previous study, by the University of Virginia, found that men who had ever used alcohol were significantly more likely to develop COVID than men who did not use alcohol, and were also more likely than women to die of COVEH.
“While there are likely other explanations for this increase in coroniviral deaths, our findings provide important information on how alcohol consumption, smoking and tobacco use contribute to coronoviral mortality,” Meyer said.
“Our findings also raise important questions about the role of other drugs and alcohol in the emergence of COVDs, and underscore the importance of examining trends in drug use to prevent COVID.”
Source: Johns Hopkins University