There's absolutely no doubt that smoking is one of the unhealthiest things someone can do; it significantly reduces life expectancy and causes numerous health complications.
But what if smoking actually stops people from developing symptoms if they have a COVID-19 infection? Well, that might actually be the case as a new study from French doctors has found that those who smoke every day are much less likely to develop a severe COVID-19 infection. A report from The Guardian says that French doctors conducted this study on COVID-19 patients and found that nicotine patches might be the answer we are looking for.
According to the Pitie-Salpetriere study, "Our cross-sectional study strongly suggests that those who smoke every day are much less likely to develop a symptomatic or severe infection with Sars-CoV-2 compared with the general population. The effect is significant. It divides the risk by five for ambulatory patients and by four for those admitted to hospital. We rarely see this in medicine." If you are interested in the study's details, check it out here.
Jean-Pierre Changeux, a French neurobiologist reviewed the study and concluded that nicotine might be the chemical that is responsible for blocking the COVID-19 infection from spreading to certain cells. This would mean that nicotine could play a pivotal role in hindering the spread of COVID-19 in both infected patients, and people who are at risk of developing an infection.
It should be noted that this research is far from complete, and most of the results researchers are uncovering don't have large sample sizes. This means you shouldn't rush out and buy cigarettes or nicotine, as much more research needs to be done before any conclusions are made. It should also be noted that this doesn't change the other health implications cigarettes and nicotine bring when they are consumed.
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