New Research Shows E-Cigarettes Are Less Effective Than Gum and Other Nicotine Replacements for Quitting Smoking
According to a new study, people using e-cigarettes to quit smoking have found them less helpful than more traditional smoking cessation aids.
The study, published this month in the journal BMJanalyzed the latest data from 2017 to 2019 from the Tobacco and Health Population Assessment Study, which tracks tobacco use among Americans over time.
“This is the first time we’ve found e-cigarettes to be less popular than FDA-approved pharmaceutical aids, such as drugs or the use of patches, gummies or lozenges,” said Dr John. P Pierce, director of population science at Moores Cancer Center at the University of California, San Diego.
In fact, nearly 60% of recent former smokers who used e-cigarettes daily had started smoking again by 2019, according to the new study.
“There is no evidence that using e-cigarettes is an effective aid to quitting smoking,” Dr. Pierce said.
A three-month randomized trial in the UK, published in 2019, found that e-cigarettes, along with behavioral interventions, helped smokers quit smoking.
In guidelines published at the end of 2021, the UK’s National Institute for Health and Care Excellence decided to recommend that smokers use electronic cigarettes to help them quit smoking.
However, observational studies in the United States that study smoking in real-life settings have not found this to be true, Dr. Pierce said.
A 2021 study by his team found that people who quit smoking tobacco cigarettes between 2013 and 2016 by switching to e-cigs or other tobacco products were 8.5% more likely to start smoking again than people who quit all tobacco products.
Increase in use by teenagers
Proponents of e-cigarettes as a smoking cessation tool claim that higher nicotine versions should help cigarette smokers quit smoking because they would be able to take fewer puffs from a vape than smoking the whole day. cigarette, said Dr. Pierce.
“In 2017, cigarette sales increased by 40%, with the majority of market share being held by new brands of ultra-high nicotine e-cigarettes, he said.
“We wanted to look at these new high nicotine versions and see if there is any evidence that they helped people quit because the previous ones didn’t.”
Instead of an increase in use by smokers, the study found that the use of e-cigarettes as a cessation aid dropped by 25% over the two-year period, Dr Pierce said.
Have higher octane e-cigarettes helped those who use them quit smoking?
“We cannot study the effectiveness of these high nicotine e-cigarettes because no smokers used them for the majority of the two-year period,” said Dr Pierce.
There was a small uptick in 2019, he added, which will need to be analyzed when the next PATH data is released.
If smokers weren’t driving the rise in sales from 2017 to 2019, who was?
According to data collected by the US Food and Drug Administration, more teens were using vapes during this time.
In September 2018, then-FDA Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb called teen use of e-cigarettes an “epidemic.”
Previous work by Pierce and his team has shown that e-cigarettes can work as a gateway drug for many teens.
Young people aged 12 to 24 who used e-cigarettes were three times more likely to become daily cigarette smokers in the future, according to a 2021 study.
In addition to a link to later smoking, teen vaping has also been linked to psychological problems, headaches, stomach aches, and significant nicotine addiction.
According to the American Lung Association, in 2019 teenagers began dying from lung damage that was later linked to chemicals in vaping liquids, including vitamin E acetate.
The FDA told CNN that the agency does not comment on specific studies, but “evaluates them within the context of the totality of the evidence to further our understanding of a particular issue and help us in our mission to protect health.” public”.
“The FDA is reviewing the findings of the paper,” FDA press secretary Alison Hunt said via email.