Dipping tobacco and its health risks among young adults - A short study
Al Ameen Journal of Medical Sciences
Dipping tobacco (DT) also known as "moist snuff" is used by the smokeless tobacco users in the form of small pinches of shredded tobacco pieces kept between the lips and gums. Thirty five percent adults in India use tobacco in any form, wherein 9% smoke tobacco, 21% use smokeless tobacco and the remaining 5% use both. Tobacco accelerates the endothelial dysfunction in large arteries, arterioles and small arteries increasing the sclerotic process and thereby causing arterial stiffness. Nitric
... tiffness. Nitric oxide (NO), the endothelium produced vasodilator regulates the smooth muscle tone which is damaged by this tobacco. The sclerotic damage in arteries can be ruled out using Pulse wave analysis (PWA), a non-invasive diagnostic tool. Method: Dipping tobacco users who scored more than 5 in Fagerstroms nicotine addiction questionnaire were included into the study group (n=30) and they were compared against non tobacco users who served as control subjects. Anthropometric details like age, height and weight were collected. Resting blood pressure using a digital sphygmomanometer (OMRON HEM 501) and finger pulse wave using Digital polyrite (RMS) was recorded. Recorded data was stored in the computer and later analysed for statistical significance using Graphpad prism ver.5.0. Results: Results showed a significantly decreased large arterial stiffness in the dipping tobacco users than in the controls (5.16+1.3, 6.82+2.0, p<0.001). A slight change on pulse wave velocity was seen which is suspected to be the preliminary change affecting the arteries due to nicotine use. Conclusion: Nicotine's action to bring about arterial wall stiffness as reported earlier was contradicted in this study. Limitations in the sample size and inclusion of heavily addicted subjects would probably throw greater light on this issue.