Hookah and infections: an interview with an infectious disease doctor

Viktor Brusnyak – administrator and co-owner of the oldest professional hookah forum in the Russian Federation hookah pro

Кальян и инфекции: интервью с врачем — инфекционистом, изображение №1

  • Forum hookah pro (formerly goza) is the very first Russian-language resource on the Internet with discussions about hookahs. Tell me how you got there and how long?

Кальян и инфекции: интервью с врачем — инфекционистом, изображение №2

  • Hello to everyone who decided to read my brief interview.
    Almost from the very beginning of the emergence of hookahs in Russia, I became interested in this area. In the spring of 2008, I came across the goza forum, since then it’s in my heart, and I’m in it.

Кальян и инфекции: интервью с врачем — инфекционистом, изображение №3

– Over time, it became clear that the forum was abandoned by its former owner and after not very lengthy negotiations, I and the second active participant in the forum (Mc. Doc) got the forum in their hands.
The process of rebirth and rebirth of the forum has begun. The forum has changed its name, platform and engine.

What is your current role in the Hookah Pro forum?

I am the administrator and co-owner of the forum. The main technical part of the forum is on my shoulders.

– What do you think is what distinguishes hookah pro from other current information sites about hookahs?

– When the forum fell into our hands, it was the time of the formation of the hookah culture in our country. And our resource has actually become a book (knowledge base), and possibly the inspirer of new projects in Russia. How we differ from others, this is probably what we are from Old school, we still love Nakhlu and are not shy about talking about it, etc. Our project at the moment is a multi-year knowledge base written with a soul.

Кальян и инфекции: интервью с врачем — инфекционистом, изображение №4

    • As far as I know, hookah is just a hobby for you and you have been working in the medical topic for 10 years, please tell us more in detail, what do you do in this regard?
    • Yes it is. Paradoxical as it may seem, my main profession is the antagonist of my hobby. I am a Doctor (infectious disease specialist-hepatologist), treating infectious liver lesions, as well as other infectious diseases.
    • A few years ago a sensational transmission came out with Elena Malysheva, where she and an expert took samples from 5 points of a hookah for various bacteria, infections, etc. As a result, they found staphylococcus, fungi (aspergillus) and all kinds of other evil spirits. They say that because of this you should not smoke a hookah. What do you say about this?

  • I can only express my personal opinion, which does not have a laboratory-confirmed base. The transfer was created for one single purpose, it is to denigrate hookah smoking as a fact. You can also take samples from five points of the coffee machine or at five points of the supermarket and I assure you that no less than representatives of the flora will be found there. Yes, even smears were taken from the oral cavity of a conditionally healthy person, you can find a lot of microorganisms, but this does not mean that it is dangerous to drink coffee, go to shops and chat with people. Yes, hookah smoking is not beneficial, any smoking is not beneficial. In my opinion, smoking a hookah is the safest way to smoke tobacco.
  • Is it true that a person with a weakened immune system should definitely refrain from smoking a hookah?
  • The question is very interesting, because it is very difficult to say what a weakened immunity is. I doubt that people give an immunogram before smoking a hookah. ) If we talk about the state of ill health, whether it is a cold or other forms, then I would recommend to refrain from smoking any kind and drinking alcohol, because the effects of toxic factors give an additional burden on the already malfunctioning organism. Get well soon, and then fully enjoy your favorite bad habits.
  • Question from hookah workers: sometimes it happens that patients have to go on shift (colds). Hookah smokers hookah / blow it, served guests. How dangerous is it to infect other people in this way?
  • I wrote above about the issue of smoking and working in a sick state. As for the risks of the disease, as far as I know, in many modern institutions hookahs are not smoked by the hookah’s lungs, but by devices for hookah hooking, this is a kind of reverse-draft pump.
  • What advice would you give an ordinary hookah lover in order not to pick up any disease through a hookah: if you smoke at home or if you smoke in hookahs?
  • At home, the risks are minimal. Heat the coals well and completely. Use non-nitrated charcoal.
  • Ventilate the room. Watch out for the hygiene of the hookah. If you smoke in the company, use individual mouthpieces. For hookah principles are the same, then the whole burden of responsibility is not on the smoker, but on the hookah.
  • What tips can you give hookahs to further protect your guests?
  • Wash hookahs more often, wash hookahs better.
  • Now individual reusable mouthpieces for hookah (silicone with a ring that hangs with a ribbon around the neck) are very much spread. There is an opinion that over time they accumulate bacteria on themselves and it is better to use disposable plastic mouthpieces. Is it really?
  • Кальян и инфекции: интервью с врачем — инфекционистом, изображение №5
  • Individual mouthpieces are nice and comfortable. I myself use this. Disposable plastic is not always convenient and pleasant; they do not fit all hoses. As for bacteria and fungi that can develop in the mouthpiece, this is quite real. And here water, detergents come to our aid and as an extreme option (if you have paranoia) antiseptics.
    Smoke a hookah for your pleasure, but remember that the Ministry of Health warns)).
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