What has been happening in relation to e cigarettes, in the world.
Over the short term, e-cigarettes are almost certainly less harmful than smoking cigarettes,” said Tom Glynn, director of the American Cancer Society’s International Cancer Control. What are the long-term effects of inhaling pure nicotine into the lungs? That is something we don’t know.”
Food and Drug Administration-approved nicotine-replacement therapies such as prescription patches, Nicorette gum or inhalers typically recommend use for a limited period, usually three to six months.In 2009, the FDA sought to regulate e-cigarettes as drug-delivery devices that could not be sold unless clinical trials showed the products were safe and effective. The federal agency also reported that samples from two e-cigarette brands had small amounts of toxic chemicals and carcinogens such as tobacco-specific nitrosamines.
The FDA warned about one ingredient, diethylene glycol, which it described as an ingredient in antifreeze. Pro-vapers point out that the main ingredient, propylene glycol, is an FDA-approved food additive and commonly used in fog machines. They say –
- The amounts of this chemical found in e-cigarettes are very miniscule.
- They pose no harm.
The FDA never disclosed the amounts of toxic chemicals and carcinogens found in the sampled e-cigarettes. Other researchers conducted studies that found trace levels similar to amounts in other FDA-approved nicotine-replacement therapies.
“The products from the larger manufacturers on the American market present no more risk than products like Nicorette. They are using the same nicotine,” said Dr. Joel Nitzkin, past chair of the American Association of Public Health Physicians. “The track record to date has been excellent.”
The FDA’s attempts to regulate e-cigarettes as drugs were halted following a federal court ruling in 2010 in a lawsuit brought by Scottsdale-based Sottera, the parent company of NJOY, after the government seized its products. A judge ruled that e-cigarettes are not drugs unless they are marketed for therapeutic purposes. The FDA is now reviewing its regulation of tobacco products, which could include efforts to impose new restrictions and controls on the e-cigarette industry. A spokeswoman said the federal agency believes more research is needed to assess the “public health benefits and risks” of e-cigarettes.
Some supporters believe that public-health officials should advocate use of the devices because they have the potential to wean smokers off cigarettes. Dr. Michael Siegel, a professor at the Boston University School of Public Health, concluded in a 2011 study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine that e-cigarettes “hold promise as a smoking-cessation method” worthy of more rigorous study.
While companies are not allowed to claim e-cigarettes help smokers quit, they are still aggressively marketing their products, including the television commercials. The president of the American Lung Association’s Southwest chapter called NJOY’s ad a “definite loser” and urged government regulators to act to prevent similar ones from airing.
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