Dr. Farsalinos Discredits “Toxic Metal” Study For Being Misleading

Dr. Farsalinos Discredits “Toxic Metal” Study For Being Misleading

Dr. Konstantinos Farsalinos has built a respected reputation over the last several years by replicating and rebuking poorly designed vaping studies. In his over ten years of research on e-cigarettes, Dr. Farsalinos has never been afraid to call out misleading analysis, generally by pointing out exactly how they’re, intentionally or not, disseminating false or incomplete information. He’s conducted over 50 studies that aim to understand the differences between vaping and smoking both short and long-term. He is also one of the most influential voices in the European vaping debate.

The latest report in his sights is the well-circulated study from last week that found toxic metals in e-liquid vapor. The research was published in the Environmental Health Perspectives Journal under the title, Metal Concentrations in E-Cigarette Liquid and Aerosol Samples: The Contribution of Metallic Coils. According to the researchers, after testing vaporizers used by 56 everyday vapers, they claimed to find potentially unsafe levels of several substances, especially metals. But after carefully analyzing the report, Dr. Farsalinos concluded that the researchers had taken several critical points out of context, skewing the final results as well as their implications.

Farsalinos’ Rebuttal

The researchers in question, who work for the John Hopkins School of Public Health, got 56 vapers to bring their personal vaporizer with them for testing. After doing extensive tests on the e-liquids and aerosol, both before and after use, they concluded that toxic metals such as arsenic, chromium, manganese, nickel, and lead were present after vaping. They even claimed that the most significant metal concentrations were observed in devices that had their coils changed more often. According to the researchers, this constitutes a serious concern, as excessive levels of these substances have been linked to many types of cancer, immune conditions and cardiovascular issues. The only problem is, these concentrations are far too low to be a cause for concern, according to Dr. Farsalinos.

The primary point made by Dr. Farsalinos in his rebuttal of this study is simply that the researchers failed to explain the context of these toxic substances, therefore making the results unnecessarily bombastic. He took to his Facebook page to answer the concerns of many vapers who asked him about the legitimacy of the toxic metals study. “The ‘significant amount’ of metals the authors reported they found were measured in ug/kg. In fact, they are so low that for some cases (chromium and lead) I calculated that you need to vape more than 100 ml per day in order to exceed the FDA limits for daily intake from inhalation medications.” He suggested that this happens because studies sometimes use concentration limits associated with constant intake, as opposed to just the breaths that include e-liquid vapor. According to Farsalinos, “humans take more than 17,000 breaths per day but only 400-600 puffs per day from an e-cigarette.” So when researchers calculations omit this fact, the results can appear drastically worse than they ought too.

Taking Results Out Of Context

This isn’t the first time that the renowned tobacco harm expert had to debunk potentially serious vaping studies. He’s cautioned researchers to be wary of errors and misleading contexts. In his view, many researchers have in the past omitted errors and findings that don’t match up with what they were trying to prove. He implores researchers to fully understand the relevant contexts and implications before publishing results like these. Especially in cases where they’re not intentionally skewing their findings, it’s vital researchers avoid publishing misleading results that endorse poor public trust in e-cigarettes.

This isn’t the first time Dr. Farsalinos had to point out obvious flaws in anti-vaping research to prove they’re missing the full picture. Back in November of last year, Dr. Farsalinos conducted a few replication studies hoping to understand how the original researchers reached their conclusions. One of these studies aimed at a famous 2015 study published in the New England Journal of Medicine that claimed vaping could be around 15 times more carcinogenic than traditional cigarettes.

To replicate the originally reported findings, Dr. Farsalinos obtained the same equipment used by the researchers and tested the levels of formaldehyde present while following the same parameters of the NEJM study. What he found was that, in spite of using an atomizer far less advanced than what is commonly available today, they needed to far exceed reasonable conditions even to approach the formaldehyde levels reported. In fact, the conditions required to match the original findings can reasonably be considered unrealistic, as dry-puffs would become unavoidable well before such a high voltage.

Implications

Studies like the recently published toxic metals report are extremely detrimental to vaping. It’s well known that the public perception of e-cigarettes is overall negative. One poll by the UK’s Action on Smoking and Health found that only 13% of adults believe that vaping is safer than smoking, while over 25% think vaping is just as, if not more dangerous. With that being the case, it makes vaping an even easier target for media outlets looking for an attention-grabbing headline.

This time is no exception, with headlines decrying vaping circulating widely last week. If it weren’t for people like Dr. Farsalinos, it would be much harder to fight these false narratives. Yet these horrendous public perception numbers persist in spite of the mountains of peer-reviewed evidence indicating vaping is at least 95% safer than smoking. The only way to change the tide is to prove that many of the anti-vaping studies published are peddling half-truths or omit essential pieces of the context. That is why we must support replication studies like those done by Dr. Farsalinos, as successful replication is the only way to be sure that something is legitimate.

What do you think about the toxic metals study? Do you believe that Dr. Farsalinos is doing valuable work? How else can we work toward greater acceptance of vaping in the general public? Let us know in the comments.

Source: https://www.churnmag.com/news/dr-farsalinos-discredits-toxic-metal-study-misleading/

American Cancer Society Position Statement on Electronic Cigarettes

American Cancer Society Position Statement on Electronic Cigarettes

The American Cancer Society Board of Directors approved the following position statement on electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) in February 2018. The position statement will be used to guide ACS’s tobacco control and cessation efforts as it relates to these products.

ACS Position Statement on Electronic Cigarettes

Combustible tobacco products, primarily cigarettes, are the single greatest cause of cancer and kill about 7 million people worldwide each year.  In the United States, 98% of all tobacco-related deaths are caused by cigarette smoking.  The U.S. tobacco landscape has changed rapidly in recent years, with millions of consumers now using electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS), the most prominent of which are electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes).  E-cigarettes contain heated nicotine extracted from tobacco, as well as a variety of flavorings and other additives.

Scientific Summary: Based on currently available evidence, using current generation e-cigarettes is less harmful than smoking cigarettes, but the health effects of long-term use are not known.  The American Cancer Society (the ACS) recognizes our responsibility to closely monitor and synthesize scientific knowledge about the effects of all tobacco products, including e-cigarettes and any new products derived from tobacco.  As new evidence emerges, the ACS will promptly report these findings to policy makers, the public and clinicians.

Clinical Recommendations: The ACS has always supported any smoker who is considering quitting, no matter what approach they use; there is nothing more important that they can do for their health.  To help smokers quit, the ACS recommends that clinicians advise their patients to use FDA-approved cessation aids that have been proven to support successful quit attempts. Many smokers choose to quit smoking without the assistance of a clinician and some opt to use e-cigarettes to accomplish this goal. The ACS recommends that clinicians support all attempts to quit the use of combustible tobacco and work with smokers to eventually stop using any tobacco product, including e-cigarettes.  Some smokers, despite firm clinician advice, will not attempt to quit smoking cigarettes and will not use FDA approved cessation medications.  These individuals should be encouraged to switch to the least harmful form of tobacco product possible; switching to the exclusive use of e-cigarettes is preferable to continuing to smoke combustible products.  Of course, these individuals should be regularly advised to completely quit using all tobacco products.  The ACS strongly discourages the concurrent (or “dual”) use of e-cigarettes and combustible cigarettes, a behavior that is far more detrimental to a person’s health compared to the substantial health benefit of quitting smoking.

Policy Recommendations: The American Cancer Society recommends implementing polices and public health measures known to prevent the initiation and use of all tobacco products, including appropriate taxation, retail policies (e.g., raising the minimum age of purchase to 21), tobacco and e-cigarette aerosol-free policies and funding of evidence-based prevention and cessation programs.  The ACS strongly recommends that every effort be made to prevent the initiation of e-cigarettes by youth.  The use of products containing nicotine in any form among youth is unsafe and can harm brain development. Furthermore, evidence indicates that young e-cigarette users are at increased risk for both starting to smoke and becoming long-term users of combustible tobacco products.

The ACS encourages the FDA to regulate all tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, to the full extent of its authority, and to determine the absolute and relative harms of each product.  The FDA should assess whether e-cigarettes help to reduce tobacco-related morbidity and mortality, and the impact of marketing of e-cigarettes on consumer perceptions and behavior.  Any related regulatory regime should include post-marketing surveillance to monitor the long-term effects of these products and ensure the FDA’s actions have the intended health outcome of significantly reducing disease and death.  Furthermore, the FDA should use its authorities to reduce the toxicity, addictiveness and appeal of tobacco products currently on the market.  The ACS also applauds the FDA for recognizing its significant role as a science-based agency in helping to address the addictiveness of nicotine in cigarettes.  Reducing nicotine in all combustible tobacco products to below addictive levels holds the potential to significantly accelerate reductions in the use of combustible tobacco products, which remain by far the leading preventable cause of cancer and preventable death in the United States.

Source: https://www.cancer.org/healthy/stay-away-from-tobacco/e-cigarette-position-statement.html

EXPERT DEBUNKS VAPING ‘GATEWAY’ MYTH, RIPPING ‘BAD SCIENCE IN SERVICE OF BAD THEORIES’

EXPERT DEBUNKS VAPING ‘GATEWAY’ MYTH, RIPPING ‘BAD SCIENCE IN SERVICE OF BAD THEORIES’

A leading expert in the field of tobacco harm reduction is criticizing a wave of recent studies claiming electronic cigarettes are a “gateway” to smoking as “bad science in service of bad theories.”

The media is currently saturated with headlines decrying alternative smoking technologies as “gateway” products that are hooking a new generation on combustible cigarettes. The hysteria is being fueled by tobacco control researchers with, “blind commitment to a bad theory,” says Dr. Carrie Wade, harm reduction policy director for the R Street Institute, in an editorial for Real Clear Science.

The ideological motivations behind anti-vaping zealots are, “negatively affecting the pursuit of improved public health,” according to Dr. Wade, and hampering what should be a united effort by public health officials to transition millions of smokers off deadly combustible tobacco products.

The recent studies claiming vaping leads to smoking only prove that youths experiment, and they cannot show the true cause behind teen smoking, which is at a record low. (RELATED: ‘Science Guy’ Bill Nye Mocks Vapers, Says ‘Cigarettes Don’t Kill You Fast Enough’)

“Hypotheses based on the gateway effect are rarely supported, and a rudimentary examination of what would be required to show that certain substances are gateways indicate that it’s nearly impossible to do so,” Dr. Wade says in the Real Clear Science editorial. “There are ways to minimize the initiation of risky behaviors, but prohibiting one product in hopes of decreasing the use of another should not be one of them. …At worst, people who would otherwise benefit from the reduced harm posed by the alleged gateway product – like e-cigarettes – are put at risk of relapsing to a more dangerous product – like their combustible counterparts.”

The “gateway” theory on vaping was previously debunked in a collaborative study by researchers at the University of Stirling and Public Health England; however, tobacco control crusaders continue to push the myth.

A recent study published in the journal Pediatrics by researchers at Yale University School of Medicine makes the bold claim that a teen who uses vape products within a 30 day period is seven times more likely to use combustible cigarettes than their peers. The study, conducted over a two year period, shows that while teens will experiment with a range of substances and products, no definitive link can be made between vaping and future cigarette use.

In fact, over the course of two years of observation, “the strength of the association between e-cigarettes and combustible cigarettes decreased,” contradicting the premise pushed by Yale researchers that e-cigarettes are a gateway product. Meanwhile, previous use of combustible cigarettes continued to be the strongest indicator of future smoking for teens.

“Unfortunately, we are not deprived of misleading research that threatens to steer users away from reduced-harm products, like e-cigarettes, and toward readily available yet more dangerous tobacco products,” Dr. Wade says in the editorial. “What no study can capture – and this study is no exception – is the population of youth that would smoke combustible cigarettes regardless of e-cigarette availability. Therefore, no study can demonstrate that e-cigarette use is necessary or sufficient to future combustible cigarette use.”

Dr. Brad Rodu, a professor of medicine at the University of Louisville, similarly called out researchers at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) in a post on Tobacco Truth Jan. 3, saying they misrepresent the results of their recent federally funded study on vaping to give the impression the devices are luring teens to cigarettes.

The study used an analysis of the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) survey for 2013 to 2014 to analyze the habits of 9,909 young adults. The UCSF researchers followed up with the teens a year later to see how their tobacco and nicotine use changed.

Of the 9,909 young adults surveyed after one year, only 219 smoked cigarettes within 30 days of being asked by researchers. Of the 219 people who smoked after one year, 175 had not used hookahs, smokeless tobacco or vaping devices at the beginning of the survey, according to Dr. Rodu. (RELATED: Tobacco Behemoth Says Their New Year’s Resolution Is To Eradicate Smoking)

The vast majority of cigarette smokers after one year, according to the UCSF study pushing the “gateway” narrative, had not previously used an alternative smoking product.

“When the overwhelming majority of research does not support such a hypothesis, and the research that does draws weak conclusions, it would be egregiously irresponsible for us to craft public policies against the weight of evidence,” argues Dr. Wade. “We simply cannot let bad science in service of bad theories support public policies.”

Amid all the alarmism about teen use of e-cigarettes, as Dr. Wade points out, youth smoking is plummeting to record lows. The U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and the University of Michigan’s annual Monitoring the Future Survey released Dec. 14 shows that reported cigarette use among 12th graders fell to 4.2 percent this year, down from 24.6 percent in 1997, even as the number of youth experimenting with vaping devices increased.

Despite the onslaught of misinformation in the media on the supposed threats posed by vapor products, millions of former smokers in the U.S. are transitioning to the harm reduction tools and quitting combustible cigarettes. Roughly 2.62 million former smokers were using a vape in 2016.

Source: http://dailyvaper.com/2018/01/07/expert-debunks-vaping-gateway-myth-ripping-bad-science-in-service-of-bad-theories/

Vaping a cheaper and healthier option for smoker Lesley

If quitting smoking feels impossible, vaping is a cheaper and healthier alternative.

While e-cigarette use isn’t without its own affects on people’s health, Leicester’s Stop Smoking Service actively encourages people struggling to kick a tobacco habit to try it.

And it proved surprisingly effective for hairdresser Lesley Heggs, who switched over five months ago and hasn’t gone back since.

Lesley, 43, whose salon NuYu is in Belvoir Street, Leicester, said: “I was smoking 15 to 20 cigarettes a day and my sister, who has been trying to get me to quit for ages, signed me up for the Stop Smoking Service.

“They got me on a vape and – while I’m still not telling people I’ve completely given up smoking – I haven’t had a cigarette since.

“It’s been five months and I haven’t looked back. It’s loads cheaper and each week I’m spending £60 less – that’s a big plus for me.”

Lesley started smoking when she was 14 and she said she eventually decided to kick the habit because she felt she’s been smoking for too long.

She said: “I’ve never really tried to quit before because I’m quite stubborn and I’ve always liked going outside to have a fag. But now I can still do that with vaping. And the other good thing is that if it’s raining and I don’t want to go outside I can vape in the basement at the salon instead.

“It’s never easy quitting smoking and I still like sitting near my friends when they’re smoking but so far I’ve made it since July without one.”

The number of smokers in Leicester has dropped by thousands over the past decade.

In 2007 more than 25 per cent of Leicester adults were regular smokers but the latest figures show this is down to less than 17 per cent.

The Stop Smoking Service in Leicester has a team of experts who will help smokers find the best way to quit and support them through it.

Source: http://www.leicestermercury.co.uk/news/leicester-news/vaping-cheaper-healthier-option-smoker-837566

Vaping better than smoking, Ministry of Health tells MPs

Vaping is a far healthier alternative to smoking, health officials have told MPs.

It is much safer than smoking, and there is emerging evidence it helps people quit, the Ministry of Health said during a briefing at Parliament on Wednesday.

Vape, don’t smoke – expert
Data has shown the risks of second-hand vapour are small because of low levels of toxicants compared to smoking. There’s also evidence vapour doesn’t kill as many cells as cigarette smoke, the Ministry said.

Health officials recommended banning vaping in areas where you currently can’t smoke.

The briefing was part of a planned law change initiated by the previous Government. New regulations around e-cigarettes would legalise their sale and set regulations around displays.

The Government hasn’t decided whether the proposed changes will get its backing.
Hon Jenny Salesa, Associate Minister of Health, was given the tobacco delegation two weeks ago. She says she hasn’t made any decisions on the proposed law change to legalise the sale of e-cigarettes.

While it’s acknowledged worldwide that the relative harm of vaping is much lower than smoking, e-cigarettes are not 100 percent safe, the officials warned. People are still taking in substances that may cause risk to their health in years to come.

Māori and Pacific people are more likely to smoke than Pākehā. Vaping could be a tool to help reduce these inequalities, the Ministry of Health said.

While vaping is not as enjoyable as smoking, the officials said, there is “emerging evidence they do help people quit”.

Massey University professor of public health Marewa Glover told Newshub in November she believes the upfront cost of vaping remains a barrier for reducing inequalities and said subsidising the initial cost for those trying to quit could help.

One of the challenges in developing the law will be allowing vaping products enough visibility to encourage smokers to select them over cigarettes without encouraging young people to take it up.

While young people may experiment with use of e-cigarettes, UK data shows regular use among young people is less than 0.5% percent.

Source: http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/politics/2017/12/vaping-better-than-smoking-ministry-of-health-tells-mps.html

‘Vaping should be part of support’ to help smokers with mental health conditions quit

A group of health bodies and charities has called for more to be done to help smokers with mental health conditions quit, including accessing e-cigarettes and other treatments.

In its Statement on Electronic Cigarettes(link is external), the Mental Health & Smoking Partnership said that smoking remains “part of the culture in too many mental health settings”, and that vaping and nicotine replacement therapies should be made an easier choice than smoking.

“E-cigarettes offer another opportunity for smokers with mental health conditions that haven’t been able to stop using other methods.” – Alyssa Best, Cancer Research UK

Professor Ann McNeill, co-chair of the partnership(link is external), said that people with a mental health condition are more than twice as likely to smoke as the general population.

“This is a great inequality leading to early death and years of chronic illness for many,” she said. “E-cigarettes provide a new opportunity for people to move away from smoking and avoid the terrible burden of death and disease it causes.”

Smoking rates in people with mental health conditions have barely changed in the last 20 years, despite a steady decline in the rest of the population, said the statement.

It adds that on average people with mental health conditions die significantly earlier than the general population, with smoking likely contributing to this difference.

The partnership states that while there are many different mental health conditions, high smoking rates are a common trend among those affected.

Around 16% of adults in the general UK population smoke. But this can be as high as 70% on psychiatric units(link is external).

The partnership aims to reduce smoking rates among people with a mental health condition to 5% by 2035.

Alyssa Best, Cancer Research UK’s policy adviser, said the Government has committed to tackling the extremely high smoking rates among people with mental health conditions in the Tobacco Control Plan for England.

“E-cigarettes offer another opportunity for smokers with mental health conditions that haven’t been able to stop using other methods. They should be offered as a legitimate method of quitting across all mental health settings,” she said.

The evidence so far shows that e-cigarettes are far safer than smoking, but policies on the devices are inconsistent across mental health settings.

McNeill said the statement aimed to address some of the widespread misunderstandings about e-cigarettes, and hoped it will support mental health staff and organisations in thinking about how they can encourage more of their service users to quit smoking.

Lesley Colley, from the Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust, said that e-cigarettes and nicotine replacement therapies contributed to the trust cutting smoking rates from 43% to 28% since March 2016.

“Service users overwhelmingly requested the option to use electronic cigarettes during an in-patient stay and the trust supported this by offering free disposable electronic cigarettes on admission.

Smokers should switch to vaping: experts

Australian lives could be saved if smokers are encouraged to switch to vapes or e-cigarettes, leading health experts say.

Health professionals gathered in Melbourne on Monday to hear how the smoke-free technology could help smokers move away from deadly cigarettes.

“For those smokers who won’t or can’t quit, the next best thing would be to switch to vaping,” Queen Mary University professor Hayden McRobbie told AAP.

He says it may not save the Australian government’s health budget in the long term – as non-smokers live longer – but it has the potential to save lives.

E-cigarettes or vapes can still contain nicotine, which is addictive, but they do not burn or emit toxic smoke into the lungs, Prof McRobbie said.

Nicotine for vapes is not legally allowed to be sold in Australia, but some vapers import it from overseas.

University of New South Wales professor Colin Mendelsohn said vapes containing nicotine and mimicking the sensory aspects of smoking allowed users to replicate the experience without the toxic fumes.

“The sooner these products are legalised in Australia, the more lives will be saved,” Prof Mendelsohn told AAP.

New Zealand is planning to legalise the sale of nicotine-containing e-cigarettes in order to regulate them as consumer products from mid-2018.

“While the long-term risks are not entirely clear, there is broad consensus now that they are much less harmful than tobacco cigarettes,” Prof McRobbie said.

“This (vaping) might offer another option to get to a smoke-free life.

“You do want policy measures encouraging people to move away from traditional smoking and you want to protect those that don’t smoke, like young people.”

Both professors have run studies into the benefits of e-cigarettes, confirming they get no money from the tobacco or e-cigarette industries.

The pair are in Melbourne as part of the Australasian Professional Society on Alcohol and other Drugs Conference, where Prof McRobbie gave a keynote speech.

Source: http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/2017/11/13/smokers-should-switch-vaping-experts

UK Gov. urged to launch a year round vaping campaign

Stoptober, is organized by National Health Service (NHS) UK and is a campaign that encourages smokers to quit cigarettes for the month of October, with the hope that this will encourage them to stop smoking for good. The campaign offers a number of suggestions to smokers wishing to quit, and highly recommends the combination of behavioral support and the use of Nicotine Replacement Therapies (NRTs).

Preliminary figures seem to suggest that this year’s campaign was a success in encouraging many smokers to transition to vaping. A number of studies have indicated that besides being significantly safer than regular cigarettes, e-cigarettes are smokers’ preferred smoking cessation tools. This is due to the fact that the hand to mouth motion required to vape, closely imitates the action of smoking, making the transition from smoking to not-smoking a smoother one for addicts.

Hence, tomorrow on Wednesday the 1st of November, Vice-Chair of the APPG, Gareth Johnson, is leading a debate pertaining to the topic in the House of Commons, urging lawmakers to take advantage of the success of Stoptober and launch a year round campaign to keep promoting vaping as a smoking cessation or harm reduction tool.

Below is the official statement by the APPG:

Parliamentarians call on Government to keep promoting the health benefits of vaping in the wake of Public Health England’s successful advertising campaign

A group of MPs and Peers have today (Wednesday 1st November) urged the government to build upon Public Health England’s (PHE) Stoptober anti-smoking campaign, which was the first of its kind to encourage the use of vaping as a means to quit smoking.

In its report “The State of the Vaping Nation” the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on E-Cigarettes has called upon the government and public health bodies to sustain and capitalise on the level of public engagement with vaping seen during Stoptober by launching a continuous programme to keep promoting and accurately communicating the positive public health evidence for vaping.

Following the PHE campaign, which emerged from the government’s commitment in its recently published Tobacco Control Plan to back the promotion of the positive public health opportunity of vaping, the UK Vaping Industry Association (UKVIA), the largest trade body representing the sector, has reported that its members have experienced significant increase in sales during Stoptober.

In particular, the APPG has seen evidence from the UKVIA that there has been a considerable rise in starter-kit sales this Stoptober, suggesting a significant increase in those smokers trying vaping for the first time.

Watford-based Vape Club, the UK’s largest online vape e-liquid shop and JAC Vapour, a leading retailer, wholesaler and producer of vaping products, have experienced increases in starter kit sales by 37% and 65% year on year respectively.

Edinburgh based Vaporized, the UK’s largest vape retail chain, added 3 more stores to its now 106 store portfolio and experienced a 40% year on year rise in sales this October.

Mark Pawsey MP, Chairman of the APPG on E-Cigarettes, said: “The positive public health message regarding vaping has up to now been failing to get across to the UK’s remaining 7.6 million smokers. The Public Health England campaign was a welcome change and has had an obvious effect, but it needs to be sustained, not just a one off.

“That’s why today we are calling upon the government to ensure such campaigns become the norm, not an exception, so that the UK can fully exploit the public health potential of vaping.

“Without these campaigns the current mixed messages surrounding vaping will continue and create a confusing picture.”

Doug Mutter, a board member at the UKVIA, added: “when our own esteemed health bodies already recognise vaping as being at least 95% less harmful than smoking, why are we preventing people from making the switch by banning most advertising? Why does the industry have more strict packaging guidelines than bleach?”

The report also highlights a worrying trend in the public perception of vaping as an alternative to smoking, with only 20% of people correctly identifying that vaping is “a lot less harmful” than smoking, compared to 31% in 2015.

In addition, the number of adults who believe that vaping products are “as harmful”, or “more harmful” than smoking has nearly quadrupled from 2013 to 2017 from 7% to 26%.

Louise Ross, Stop Smoking Service Manager for Leicester City Council, the first Stop Smoking Service to go e-cigarette friendly, said: “we are concerned that aspects of the Tobacco Products Directive work against helping people to stop smoking, by making life for vapers more difficult…and by preventing positive messages being shared among those who have been frightened off vaping by a hostile propaganda war.”

The parliamentarians believe misinformation is actively preventing smokers from making the decision to switch; the number of UK vapers increased by just 4% from 2016 to 2017, compared to 86% in 2013, 62% in 2014, and 24% in 2015.

The APPG on E-Cigarettes report also recommends:

  • An urgent review by the Government of vaping regulation as per its commitment in the Tobacco Control Plan, particularly the disproportionate elements of Article 20 of the European Union’s Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) that effectively puts vaping in the same bracket as smoking;
  • That the Government adopts a wider collaborative approach to policy creation in this area which involves all stakeholders including regulators, the scientific community, public health and the vaping industry;
  • That Trading Standards ensures that current vaping regulations, particularly relating to product standards within the TPD, are consistently and vigorously enforced as the vaping industry has invested £6m in conforming to them;
  • That the Government reviews and considers steps taken by the devolved authorities in Scotland and Wales to develop the enforcement powers of regulators.

Source: https://www.vapingpost.com/2017/10/31/uk-gov-urged-to-launch-a-year-round-vaping-campaign/

Scientists Weigh In – Secondhand Vapor Is Not Harmful

Although vaping has been around since 2004, the real uptick in vapers only happened several years ago, when the industry ironed out the kinks and presented casual users with a wide variety of easy-to-use vaping devices. Since then, the vaping community has been under constant attacks from vaping opponents, most of which are able to secure serious coverage by the mainstream media.

One of the more debated issues is the supposed danger of secondhand vaping. Similarly to smokers, vapers have been accused of polluting the air around them and exposing others (mainly children and young adults) to the dangers of secondhand vapor. One small, but widely quoted study, even went as far as to suggest that vaping seriously impairs indoor air quality by depositing particles of harmful substances.

However, is that really the case?

Vaping is not smoking and vapor is not cigarette smoke, which contains over 4000 chemical compounds, 69 of which are carcinogenic. In essence, e-liquid (substance vaporized by vape pens and other vaping devices) contains only several ingredients which, under normal vaping practices, produce no harmful substances.

At least, that’s what prominent and peer-reviewed scientific research tells us.

Evidence Points Toward Vaping Not Impairing Indoor Air Quality

The above-mentioned study published in the International Journal of Hygiene and Environmental Health in 2014 concludes that e-cigarette usage in a thoroughly ventilated room contributed to a 20% increase polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), a 2.4-fold increase in aluminum, and a substantial increase in other pollutants.

Sounds scary, right?

However, the abstract of the study also tells us that the tested sample was small – nine volunteers with six vape sessions each, which is hardly a sample at all. Moreover, we have no idea about the methodology used. What type of devices were they vaping on? Nicotine concentrations? What was their vaping method and did they engage in so-called ‘dry puff’ vaping (intentionally overheating the liquid to get condemning results, a practice that has been discredited by scientists because it doesn’t mirror real use scenarios, but is still used by some researchers)?

We have no idea, so it’s pretty difficult to find this study credible or conclusive, by any stretch of the imagination.

On the other hand, a recent study published in the Public Library of Science came up with drastically different conclusions. The study focused on more than 300 homes in the San Diego area and its purpose was to examine air quality of households where there was evidence of indoor smoking and vaping and compare it with the air quality of households that were smoke and vapor-free. Scientist installed monitoring equipment in all the households and the data was transmitted to them for analysis. There were 43 homes that reported indoor vaping and the data showed no detectable increase in air pollution.

Here’s what the researchers had to say about vaping and air quality impairment: “We observed no apparent difference in the weekly mean particle distribution between 43 homes reporting any electronic cigarette usage and those reporting none.”

In essence – vaping indoors is same as not vaping indoors. Your air quality will not change and you’re most certainly not putting anyone at risk.

Bystanders Don’t Need to Be Concerned About Secondhand Vaping Because It’s a Non-Issue, According to Scientists

Secondhand vapor is not dangerous to non-vaping bystanders. In fact, there’s no proof that it’s even dangerous to vapers. There are numerous studies that failed to find a connection between adverse health effects and vaping aerosol (incorrectly referred to as ‘vape smoke’ by vaping detractors), which is how vapor is technically referred to by scientists. A widely cited study by Public Health England from 2015 actually concluded that vaping is approximately 95% safer than smoking, and its authors encouraged the use of e-cigarettes for smoking cessation.

There are several other studies that dealt predominantly with secondhand vaping, all of which have concluded that vaping is not dangerous to non-vapers. Igor Burstyn from Drexel University took a most thorough look at passive vaping. His literature review titled Peering Through The Mist examined over 9,000 observations on vape aerosol, which he found through PubMed search.

Essentially, Burstyn took the same guidelines that are used to ensure workplace air quality and safety and assumed that innocent bystanders are unwilling to assume any risk from passive vaping whatsoever. He then examined particulate matter that’s produced by vaping and concluded the following: “Current state of knowledge about chemistry of liquids and aerosols associated with electronic cigarettes indicates that there is no evidence that vaping produces inhalable exposures to contaminants of the aerosol that would warrant health concerns by the standards that are used to ensure safety of workplaces”.

In translation?

Vaping would get a green light from agencies that are tasked with ensuring workplace air quality. That means that there’s absolutely no risk to anyone who’s standing in a room in which someone else is vaping.

The UK’s Royal College of Physicians came to the same conclusion. Their ‘Nicotine Without Smoke’ study completely dismisses the question ‘vape smoke’, correctly realizing that it’s a non-issue. Researchers even say that the biggest concern in this respect is passive exposure to nicotine but point out that “nicotine from exhaled vapour can be deposited on surfaces, but at such low levels that there is no plausible mechanism by which such deposits could enter the body at doses that would cause physical harm.” The previously mentioned Public Health England study quantified that nicotine exposure by noting that it’s 169 times lower than that of smoking, and that, as such, it poses no real danger.

Vape detractors will also mention VOCs (volatile organic compounds) frequently, saying that e-cigs create them and noting their carcinogenic properties. In fact, a 2015 study conducted by the Spanish Council of Scientific Research compared vape aerosol and cigarette smoke, specifically searching for 156 VOCs. They found none in vape aerosol. Vaping champion, Dr. Konstantinos Farsalinos commented on the research, saying that it proves that there are more VOCs in normally expelled lung air than in vapor produced by e-cigarettes.

Why Are We Still Debating Secondhand Vapor?

Indeed, that’s the real question.

The assumption among vape proponents is that there’s still fear that vaping can lead to smoking. That’s the only logical reason why there would be so much bad and misleading information about secondhand vapor coming from certain ‘reputable’ scientists. They fear that vaping could lead to ‘renormalization’ of smoking.

That couldn’t be further from the truth. Vaping should be seen as a highly successful method of smoking cessation and further attempts to demonize it will only lead to fewer people deciding to go that route. If that comes to pass, it will be guilty of doing a great disservice to public health.

Source:https://www.econotimes.com/Scientists-Weigh-In-Secondhand-Vapor-Is-Not-Harmful-976651

VAPING PRAISED BY BRITISH MEDICAL GROUP AS ‘EFFECTIVE’ TOOL FOR QUITTING

A new study on vaping out of the United Kingdom is suggesting the government add electronic cigarettes to their list of cessation tools and promote the devices for smokers.

A report from the British Psychological Society released this week seeks to clear the air on misconceptions surrounding the health impacts of vaping devices and includes recommendations to the government on how they can leverage the technology to reduce smoking rates in the country. The researchers found that e-cigarettes are by far the most popular cessation tool for smokers and argue government programs that promote quitting smoking should recognize this fact.

The researchers note that long term smoking takes an average of 10 years of life off the user, and the medical and indirect costs associated with the habit are estimated to cost the National Health Service (NHS) $13.9 billion annually. By offering the choice of e-cigarettes through the NHS Stop Smoking Services (SSS), the researchers say the health body can drastically reduce costs while saving lives.

“E-cigs are a more attractive method of quitting than traditional methods because they address the behavioral aspects of smoking as well as the physical addiction,” Dr. Lynne Dawkins, associate professor at London South Bank University and co-author of the report, told The Daily Caller News Foundation. “There is increasing evidence that they are far less harmful than cigarettes and useful to many smokers trying to quit smoking.”

The government getting behind the technology is a crucial component to encouraging smokers to use the devices. Dawkins argues the perpetual misinformation circulating the public on vaping and a lack of government backing make people skeptical of the products and less likely to regularly use them.

“Many smokers have tried e-cigarettes and not continued to use them,” Dawkins told TheDCNF. “In order to encourage more smokers to make the switch, we need to: send clear messages about the reduced harm compared with smoking; allow e-cigarettes to evolve and improve and avoid arbitrary caps on nicotine levels; and raise the cost of smoking and reduce the cost of e-cigarettes.”

A study released Oct. 2 by the Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center at Georgetown University Medical Center reveals alternative smoking technologies could drastically reduce deaths from smoking. The study shows that if vaping were to largely replace smoking, roughly 6.6. million smokers would avoid premature death and collectively add 86.7 million extra years to their lives.

Public health experts focused on harm reduction say governments need to publicly recognize the benefits of vaping if they are serious about achieving a smoke-free future.

Source: http://dailyvaper.com/2017/10/12/vaping-praised-by-british-medical-group-as-effective-tool-for-quitting/