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Some advice regarding asthma and ecigarettes

Discussion in 'Health, Safety and Vaping' started by Rhia, Feb 5, 2012.

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  1. Rhia

    Rhia Full Member

    Feb 5, 2012
    United Kingdom
    Heya all,

    I've been smoking for many years now and have come to the decision that I would like to quit. However, I'm asthmatic and have sensitive skin, I can't even use normal plasters as they cause a skin reaction, so I'm unable to use the nicotine patches as I have a really bad skin reaction to them. I have tried the champix tablets but I had really bad side effects from them and I became very irritable as well. I've also tried the nicotine inhalator along with a new inhaler that my doctor wanted me to try as I was giving up smoking. The inhaler I used made my asthma much worse and when I went to see the asthma nurse she told me that this particular inhaler can make asthmatics worse, after doing some research I found that this inhaler is banned in the US. Anyway the doctor said it was more likely the nicotine inhalator that caused my asthma to worsen but I only used it once, whereas I continued with the inhaler but found that my asthma was worsening each time I used it. So I got really confused as to what set my asthma off.

    So the bottom line is now my doctor will not discuss me giving up smoking at the moment until my asthma settles down but I want to desperately give up and have tried everything that's available apart from the ecigarette. My question is will using the ecigarette make my asthma worse and should I avoid it?

    Is there an ecigarette that is suitable for asthma sufferers?

    I've tried to ask my doctor but he doesn't know much about them and he said that very likely if it has nicotine in then it'll cause the same reaction, but tobacco has nicotine in so I'm really confused. Any help would be much appreciated!

    So sorry for the long wall of text and I hope I've made sense!
  2. Maff

    Maff Full Member Verified Member

    Sep 20, 2011
    Norfolk, England
    Check if you're likely to react with Glycerin and Propylene Glycol - these are the main ingredients in vapour....

    I think that PG is present in asthma inhalers?

    check ingredients in eliquid
  3. Dan1911

    Dan1911 Senior Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Doctors are a bit funny on things that haven't been completely approved by a governing body and signed off on. If he tells you to try an ecig, and it makes it worse, hes liable for that.

    You sound pretty sensitive allergy-wise. If you want to give this a shot I have a couple suggestions.

    You can buy a cheap cheap 510 kit from a vendor on this forum, and grab some USP pure PG and VG from someplace like walmart and toss it in an atty to test your reaction, or dive straight into pure VG low-nic e liquid and drip it into an atomizer. Im almost certain that PG is in most inhalers, and there are alot of people that have reactions to PG. That being said, I'd start with VG. it seems to be easier on most people with allergy's.

    We aren't talking about life threatening serious asthma here are we? because depending on how bad it is I would be extremely careful about what you try. You might be better off going cold turkey, using gums, snus, etc.
  4. SockMonkey

    SockMonkey Full Member

    Jan 13, 2012
    Chandler, AZ
    I'm asthmatic and have ben using an ego for quite some time. At first quitting analogs and using the ecig made my asthma act up. Not enough that would put me in the hospital but made me use my emergency albuterol inhaler more often. After about a week of not smoking analogs, the symptoms/weezing got less and less. For me, the whole NOT smoking thing actually hurt me. It maybe kinda hard to understand, but I'll try. After smoking for many years (15) your lungs get full of tar and I'm not sure if you have noticed but for me my asthma attacks were alot less frequent when smoking but were more intense. My doctor had told me that asthmatics that smoke don't notice the smaller attacks due to not using some of the bronchial tubes lower in the lungs due to the fact of them full of tar. So, you had no idea of a asthma attack. I'm now 7-8 weeks cig free and have been using my e cig twice as much as i smoked (i smoked 2 packs a day). I feel a whole lot better, my sense of smell has come back, I started working out (45 min on an elliptical at 4-5 MPH) without weesing or needeing an inhaler, and haven't used my emergency inhaler in weeks. The only adverse reaction I've had with e-cigs (and BTW I'm allergic to just about everything) was with e-juice from one of the mall stands. I broke out in hives on my chest and breathing became difficult. However I've been using Dekang juices and madvapes juices in pure PG, 50/50, and pure VG with no problems. Also, it's probobly not the nicotine. Smoking an analog typically gives you 1.0 mg nicotine into your blood steam. While smoking an e-cig at 18mg for just as long typically gives you 0.1-0.3 mg nicotine into the blood stream. So it is probably something else. Have your doctor put you on a corticosteroid inhaler like flovent, advair, or symbicort. Symbicort has worked wonders on me and I have had my dose changed lower since I quit smoking, and there are times I have forgotten to take it and haven't noticed. Dan1911 is right that PG is in most inhalers. Its also in nebulizer solution, along with most processed foods, shampoo's/soaps, vitamin supplements, etc. You can buy some VG and some PG and do your own scratch test (like I did). Take a safety pin, dip it in PG and scratch part of your left hand with it. Do the same to your right hand with VG. Do'nt scrath yourself to draw blood or too long. Just a very small scrath is enough. After 15 minutes look at both scratchs. Scale is 1mm-5mm. No bumb or hive equalls not allergic, 5mm or larger means highly allergic. Don't use the same safety pin and make sure it's sterile to get good readings. Thats what I did, but I am in no way a physician or recommend doing this. Doing a simple procedure like this can cause an adverse allergic reaction and shouldn't be done without doctor supervision. Ask your Pulmonologist or Allergist to test for allergies for these things. You would be surprised at how much allergens can play on your asthma symptoms. Also the nicotrol nose spray is not reccomended for asthmatics and the regular nicotrol inhaler can cause bronchial inflammation, bronchitis, and higher blood pressure in some cases. They also react to some anti-depressants. And the nicotrol inhaler contains menthol, which some may have adverse effects from. If you have adverse reactions i.e. chest pain, breathing difficulties, etc you should stop using and talk to your physician. IMO e-cigs are definately healthier but if your asthma is that bad, I'd suggest quitting cold turkey while on a corticosteroid inhaler. Your doctor is right at one point and that is to get your asthma back in control before trying anything else. If you try something before it is controlled you could be putting your life in danger. It worked for me, but PLEASE take proper precautions before you try something else.
  5. Huffelpuff

    Huffelpuff Vaping Master Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Aug 27, 2011
    Philadelphia Burbs
    I would see another doctor for a 2nd opinion if that's an option for you. You could bring along some data on the ingredients in ejuice and some info about vaping and tell him that you are interested and would like his/her help. Best of luck in quitting the analogs.
  6. leftfeild

    leftfeild Super Member ECF Veteran

    May 21, 2011
    You don't have to inhale the vapour from ecigarettes to get the nicotine from it; you can get the nicotine from the membranes in your mouth and nose if you puff it like a cigar.

    I would try straight pg and straight vg juice. I didn't think I was allergic to anything but I'm really intolerant to pg - I'll break out in a rash pretty quickly if I take pg. But some others are allergic to vg so you could react to either.

    I doubt ecigs will be any worse for asthema than a real cigarette and if anything it should be better. I live with an asthematic who's tried my ecigs and it doesn't set them off to use them or inhale my exhaled vapour second hand.

    It's too bad I can't link to some sites in the UK because they're not a registered supplier here, because I could get you a starter kit for £7 no problem but I can't link it or even mention their name.

    So anyway, try out the little SD keyring because it's the next best cheapest ecig: The SD KeyRing Ecig £12.99 - Basic Vaping Kits - SD KeyRing Ecig Electronic Cigarettes | Vaping Devices | Accessories | E-Liquid (use 'allabout' for 10% off)

    You can get some 5ml trial sizes for cheap on FreedomVape Online Store - Items - FreedomVape (UK) (use 'juice10' for a 10% discount - only works for juice and not pick 'n mix or anything else) you will have the option of vg or pg or a mix of both from freedomvape to try them out with.

    You will need spare cartomisers as well: Boge 510 Standard Resistance (5) £5.79 - Vaping Spares - Cartomisers Electronic Cigarettes | Vaping Devices | Accessories | E-Liquid 'allabout' for 10% off again.
  7. dookie

    dookie Full Member

    Feb 4, 2012
    Edmonton, AB, Canada
    For what it's worth, my wife has asthma and has no issues with vaping at all. In fact, in one of her asthma medications, PG is one of the main ingredients.
  8. katharineb
    This message by katharineb has been removed from public view. Deleted by a moderator, Feb 5, 2012.
    Feb 5, 2012
  9. leftfeild

    leftfeild Super Member ECF Veteran

    May 21, 2011
  10. Rhia

    Rhia Full Member

    Feb 5, 2012
    United Kingdom
    Thank you all for your replies. I have an appointment with my doctors tomorrow so I will ask again about the ecigarette with the more information that I have managed to find. The inhalers I'm on are the salbutomal and the flixotide evohaler and I've tried to find the ingredients to see if PG is in these but I haven't found it by searching on the Internet. I had a look at my hair products and my hair cream has PG in and I've not had a skin reaction to it so I'm hoping that I can use The PG ecigarettes. I'm pretty sure I read that VG may cause asthma symptoms but I'm not a 100% sure on that.

    I've been having a look at the halo ecigarette which I can't remember how I found the link but I think it was from an advert on this site that I clicked on. These don't require the juice just refill cartridges. I don't know if anyone has any experience with these and whether they're any good at all?

    Thank you for the links regarding vouchers and recommended sellers. However there are so many of them that I don't know where to begin. What's the best ecigarette out there? Is there a preference that most like? I'm not too bothered about the price of the starter kits as long as they're not too expensive, I wouldn't really want to pay more than £50 for a starter kit though!

    Thank you all for sharing and helping me with my questions. I really appreciate this :)
  11. bruiser

    bruiser Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Nov 20, 2010
    Louisville, KY
    I have asthma and allergies. Actually, according to the allergist, the asthma was caused by untreated allergies. I use an eGo with 80% PG and 20% VG flavors. I also use 24mg strength liquid. I actually feel better. Might be the PG. Next time I go for the breathing test, I'll ask if any improvement has been shown.

    There are also some threads in the Health forum about this.
  12. Chewyorphan

    Chewyorphan Full Member

    Feb 6, 2012
    Suwanee, Ga
    I am also an asthmatic, been so for 29 years (since i was 2...). However smoking never really seemed to bother me, or so i thought... 17 years ago, when i started to smoke it didnt seem like it really had an affect on my asthma. Now being quit for almost a week, it now seems it has. I have started to vape and I can tell a very noticeable improvement in my breathing.

    I was starting to form a habit of using a rescue inhaler 3-4-5 times a day, and not even think much about it! Since i have been vaping, i have maybe used it twice all week, and im a newbie vaper of almost a week.

    I am starting to see that vaping is going to extend my life vs smoking the tobacco alternative. I am waiting to see the benefits of my lungs clearing and healing.

    I have had the chance to try pg vs. vg. VG all the way for me. I dont think my body was enjoying the PG all too well...

    I do have a pulmonary doctors appointment in a couple weeks, and I am anxious myself to see what he is going to say to me when I mention i traded smoking for vaping. I already know he is going to notice an improvement right away.

    I know it gets old hearing people say something about "You smoke and have asthma?" Yes, I did smoke. It is very hard to get past the "dependancy" of moving hand to mouth, and inhaling something... as it was usually an inhaler, or a cigarette. Dependancy is the only thing I honestly know to call it.

    Like I said, vaping is HELPING ME TREMENDOUSLY!! :)
  13. hairball

    hairball ECF Guru Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Sep 17, 2010
    Other Places
    Hubby has asthma and it's actually improved since he went to vaping. He never smoked but chewed. He hasn't had an attack since summer. I hope you can find an eliquid that will work for you.
  14. twohandedcreations

    twohandedcreations Super Member Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Sep 19, 2011
    orlando florida
    I have a very close friend that has severe asthma, and after his last hospitalization, the day he got out I gave him his first Ecig. Since then (about 5 months ago), he said he hasn't even had to use his inhaler, let alone his nebulizer. His words verbatim were "My lungs haven't worked this good since I was 15"... I just thought I'd let you know his story, and I'm sure this may not be the case for every one. But, his asthma is by far the worst out of anyone I've ever known and switching to vaping has really seemed to improve his quality of life. I'm sure nothing can beat oxygen alone tho..... But, if you gotta have your nicotine, like alot of us do, vaping seems to be a far better way to get your fix then smoking...!

    p.s......age 15 was when he started smoking, he's 32 now.
  15. AdrenalinnRush

    AdrenalinnRush Full Member Verified Member

    Jan 30, 2012
    Eugene, Oregon
    I have been vaping for 3/4 of a year and have had no problem so far! I'm asthmatic but a pg/vg 80/20 ratio has never hurt me.
  16. Rhia

    Rhia Full Member

    Feb 5, 2012
    United Kingdom
    I spoke to my doctor but couldn't tell me whether PG is in my inhalers, however there is glycerol in my nasal spray I use for my allergies and I'm fine on that. Don't know whether its PG or a form of PG or not but my local pharmisist told me that if I'm fine on Glycerol I should be okay on PG.

    I'm going to buy a mini starter pack first before I take the plunge and buy more just to be on the safe side. Could someone tell me what to be on the lookout for in case I do have a reaction. Is it just a rash and hives to look out for or something more?

    Thanks again in advance!
  17. MadValleyVapingMama

    MadValleyVapingMama Moved On

    Dec 31, 2011
    I too have asthma, not severe by any means. I used an inhaler when needed. I started with e-cigs in Dec and still had 6-12 analogs a day. Two weeks ago I quit the analogs and use my e-cig only.
    I have not used my inhaler at all since starting with the e-cigs. Just before I completely got of the analogs, my Dr. said he could notice a slight improvement in my lungs.
    I think you should keep in mind that some people do go through a few lung issues after quitting, as the lungs are clearing out all the built up tar & crap.
    The real test for me will be in the hot humid summer, to see if I can make it through with out using Symbicort.
    Good luck Rhia and welcome to ECF
  18. leftfeild

    leftfeild Super Member ECF Veteran

    May 21, 2011
  19. Rhia

    Rhia Full Member

    Feb 5, 2012
    United Kingdom
    Thank you all again for the advice so far. I have been looking at the links of recommended sellers that was given earlier in the post and I've nearly decided on what I'm going to get. However just have a few questions...

    I've decided to go for VG based as I've done some further searching on PG and think it might not be best for me because I have sensitive skin, I also suffer from eczema and I've read that PG can possibly dry the skin out so just to be on the safe side I'm going to try VG eliquid. However I cannot find a mini starter kit to just try it out that is VG based, the mini starter kits seem to be all PG based. Is there a VG based starter kit that I can try?

    If there isn't I've looked at other starter kits and found this one that I'm considering buying here: The Elegance Starter Kit - Cloud 9 Vaping

    Now the thing is I will have to buy my own eliquid to go in, and I'm unsure on what strength to go for. I've been smoking for a heck of a long time and I suppose I'm a heavy smoker, especially at times when I'm really stressed out I do tend to smoke ten times more than I normally do. Should I go for the highest strength first? I'm not going to get a flavoured VG eliquid just straight and I think the highest strength on cloud9 website is 3.6%, is that the strength I should try?

    Lastly I'm really confused about the look of it, is it fiddly setting it all up?

    Thanks again for all the advice I've received so far. Sorry to keep asking questions but I want to make sure that I get the right product. Don't want to just buy what I think I should get and realising I've made a mistake and bought the wrong thing!
  20. Spazmelda

    Spazmelda Vaping Master Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Aug 18, 2011
    The only thing I'll add is to pay attention to the different flavors. Some flavors irritate my bronchial tubes much more than others. I had a tasty pear mix that I just can't use because it closes my throat up and causes pretty bad asthma. There are a few others that have done this so I have to avoid those. Also, vaping laying down closes my bronchial tubes up too. No idea why.
  21. MadValleyVapingMama

    MadValleyVapingMama Moved On

    Dec 31, 2011
    Rhia, if you were smoking strong cigs I'd get the 36 nic, if not, get a 24 if they have. You may also want to get some plain VG so if your juice is to high of a nic level you can bring it down
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