The e-cig gateway has two doors

When people talk about the “gateway effect” of e-cigarettes, they are usually referring to the first gateway: the fact that never-smoking kids who initiate nicotine use with e-cigarettes are more likely to start smoking cigarettes than youth who never try e-cigarettes. E-cig enthusiasts dismiss these studies by invoking the “common liability” theory which asserts thatContinue reading “The e-cig gateway has two doors”

Ecig enthusiasts respond to criticism that they selectively cited the science by ignoring the conclusions of the papers they do cite

In addition to the excellent paper by Samet and Barrington-Trimis the American Journal of Public Health recently published two letters to the editor — one from Wasim Maziak and one from me — criticizing the paper “Balancing consideration of the risks and benefits of e-cigarettes.” That paper argues that concerns over youth e-cigarette use needsContinue reading “Ecig enthusiasts respond to criticism that they selectively cited the science by ignoring the conclusions of the papers they do cite”

E-cigs: What about helping the smokers?

A lot of the discussion of e-cigarettes has been about the millions of youth who are starting nicotine addiction with them. While the tobacco companies are obvious beneficiaries of this fact, no one — not even the companies — publicly claims that this is a good thing. The goal is to “help addicted smokers quitContinue reading “E-cigs: What about helping the smokers?”

Youth smoking and vaping growing in e-cig friendly New Zealand

New Zealand, like England, the US FDA, and a few other countries, has embraced e-cigarettes. Like other e-cig enthusiasts, the Health Ministry minimizes risks to kids. In particular, its “Position statement on vaping” says: There is no international evidence that vaping products are undermining the long-term decline in cigarette smoking among adults and youth, andContinue reading “Youth smoking and vaping growing in e-cig friendly New Zealand”

Vaping disrupts mitochondria and promotes inflammation independent of the effects of past smoking

The fact that many e-cigarette users are former or current cigarette smokers (dual users) complicates understanding the health effects of e-cigarette use.  Stella Tommasi, Ahmad Besaratinia and their colleagues at USC have used sophisticated genomic analysis of white blood cells (leukocytes) collected from people to pry these effects apart. In their paper, “A novel roleContinue reading “Vaping disrupts mitochondria and promotes inflammation independent of the effects of past smoking”

E-cig inventor Hon Lik is still smoking

Popular lore is that Chinese pharmacist Hon Lik invented e-cigarettes in 2003 to help people quit smoking. The Times of London reported that it didn’t work for him. Instead of “switching completely” he is a dual user, vaping and smoking at the same time. Hon Lik’s experience is what you would expect from the strongContinue reading “E-cig inventor Hon Lik is still smoking”

FCTC stimulated smoking bans and pictorial warnings but not tax increases or ad bans

The WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) committed Parties to, among other things, implement tobacco demand reduction measures including smokefree laws, strong health warning labels and increase tobacco taxes. Previous studies, including some of our work, have generally shown that countries followed treaty ratification by implementing at least some of these policies. Now HeikkiContinue reading “FCTC stimulated smoking bans and pictorial warnings but not tax increases or ad bans”

E-cigarettes don’t help smokers stay off cigarettes

Last week the FDA authorized the sale of RJ Reynolds’ (BAT’s US subsidiary) Vuse e-cigarette despite heavy use by kids because “the manufacturer’s data demonstrates its tobacco-flavored products could benefit addicted adult smokers who switch to these products – either completely or with a significant reduction in cigarette consumption – by reducing their exposure toContinue reading “E-cigarettes don’t help smokers stay off cigarettes”

Even more evidence that youth who start with e-cigs triple the odds that they will later smoke cigarettes

As more studies are published on the link between youth e-cigarette use and subsequent cigarette smoking youth, people continue publish meta-analyses summing up the results. The latest such meta-analysis, recently published in PLOS One by Sze Lin Yoong and colleagues, “Association between electronic nicotine delivery systems and electronic non-nicotine delivery systems with initiation of tobaccoContinue reading “Even more evidence that youth who start with e-cigs triple the odds that they will later smoke cigarettes”

No quitting benefit for e-cigs over FDA-approved therapies … and lots of dangerous dual use

The FDA Center for Tobacco Products concern about balancing potential benefits of e-cigs with demonstrated risks to youth presumes that adults using e-cigarettes will switch completely to e-cigs and that e-cigs are substantially less risky than cigarettes. Bekir Kaplan and colleagues’ new paper Effectiveness of ENDS, NRT and medication for smoking cessation among cigarette-only users:Continue reading “No quitting benefit for e-cigs over FDA-approved therapies … and lots of dangerous dual use”