Is it possible nicotine has some benefit in Covid-19? Elizabeth Tracey reports

June 14, 2021

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Have you heard of the ‘nicotine hypothesis’? That’s the idea put forward by supposed scientific studies that somehow nicotine helped protect people from severe Covid-19 disease. Michael Blaha, a cardiologist at Johns Hopkins and tobacco cessation advocate, says there’s no evidence nicotine is beneficial.

Blaha: I think we have pretty solid evidence actually on smokers. I haven’t seen as high quality data with novel tobacco products like electronic cigarettes. But certainly there’s no data that they’re beneficial and that’s of course what some of this research of questionable quality was hinting. That some of these tobacco products might actually be protective and that doesn’t make any biologic sense and certainly there’s no strong data to support that. I think that there’s pretty good data and it makes sense that smoking leads to worse outcomes with Covid-19.  :28

Blaha says the tobacco industry is adept at spinning information to show their products in the best possible light, so buyer beware. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey. 

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