Monday September 21st 2015
By Gabe Lieb
Kings College London professor of tobacco Ann McNeil has led a study which warns that “discouraging smokers from using electronic cigarettes is irresponsible”.
She reports “We have an extensive track record of research dedicated to understanding smoking behavior and helping smokers stop smoking, published hundreds of primary research articles on smoking, nicotine and vaping, and have many years of clinical experience in smoking cessation treatments. The estimate of relative risk is a matter of logic. Risky chemicals in tobacco smoke are either absent from vapor or present at levels much below 5%, and the key chemicals present in vapor only are not expected to pose serious health risks.”
John Moxham is a professor of respiratory medicine at King’s College hospital. He is also a chair of Ash, and he says that he was concerned by the trend. “I see the harm done by smoking to my patients, many of whom struggle to draw breath because of the damage it has done to their lungs and die prematurely as a result. It would be a public health tragedy if smokers were discouraged from switching to electronic cigarettes and vapers were encouraged to go back to smoking because they don’t understand that vaping is a lot less harmful than smoking. That really would cost lives.”
The review of this information has been published in the British Medical Journal.