Peer-Reviewed Publications

      Heated Tobacco Products and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease: A Narrative Review of Peer-Reviewed Publications

      Popp, W.; Reese, L.; Scotti, E.

      Mar 16, 2023

      An estimated 65 million people worldwide have moderate or severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), an umbrella term used to describe a group of progressive lung diseases that obstruct airflow such as emphysema and chronic bronchitis. Smoking contributes to an estimated 90% of COPD cases, as the harmful chemicals produced during tobacco combustion damage the lungs and airways. Although smoking cessation is the only intervention shown to improve COPD prognosis in smokers, many patients who try to quit continue to smoke. The continued use of conventional cigarettes exacerbates COPD symptoms, and globally more than 3 million people die from the disease every year. The last two decades have seen the introduction of combustion-free nicotine delivery alternatives that produce significantly lower levels of the harmful components in cigarette smoke, and researchers have begun to assess the impact of switching from cigarettes to these products. Several studies have examined how patients with COPD use e-cigarettes as assistance for quitting, but few have examined how heated tobacco products (HTP) may reduce risk. This narrative review summarises results from pre-clinical, clinical, and real-world evidence studies showing possible harm reduction benefits for patients with COPD who switch to HTPs rather than continuing to smoke cigarettes. Epidemiological studies, real-world data analyses, and randomised clinical trials must be conducted to determine whether switching from cigarettes to HTPs can improve health outcomes in patients with COPD who would otherwise continue to smoke combustible cigarettes.