What We Should Know About E-cigarettes Safety?

using e-cigarettes does differ from
tobacco in very clear way which is that
it doesn't involve inhaling tobacco
smoke and there's the constituents of
smoke other things that kill smokers
that has to be a good thing people die
from the tar the other constituents of
smoke but not the nicotine so the
nicotine isn't the harmful component an
electronic cigarettes allows smokers to
get the nicotine without all the other
harmful stuff that comes along in
cigarette smoke we don't need to be
concerned about the nicotine in
e-cigarettes particularly obviously for
smokers because they are already using
nicotine in a far more dangerous form
and we know from studies that nicotine
is relatively safe they don't involve
any combustion of tobacco which is the
thing that produces the vast majority of
the toxins in fact they don't use
tobacco at all the main difference is
that with each cigarettes nothing is set
on fire so when you when you smoke a
you're basically inhaling the products
of combustion of dry tobacco leaf and
it's that that does the home turn to
your health so most things we do in life
carry a risk so for example driving cars
cars cause lots of road accidents lots
of people killed on the roads but we
don't stop people driving we try to make
them less harmful
so harm reduction is about enabling
people to continue doing that thing but
to do it in a less harmful way they
could be using an e-cigarette to cut
down the amount they smoke they could be
using an e-cigarette in situations where
they would otherwise normally smoke or
where they can't smoke for example what
we call temporary absence or they could
be using an e-cigarette instead of
smoking completely they switched totally
to an e-cigarette one of the things
about electronic cigarettes for tobacco
harm reduction is if people cut down
their tobacco consumption while using an
e-cigarette what we've seen from some
interesting studies is that their
exposure to toxins can substantially
reduce the first thing to note when
considering the safety of e-cigarettes
is that the vast majority of e-cigarette
users are people who are either still
smoking and using them to cut down on
the amount they smoke or have used them
to stops
making if we try to put a figure on the
relative risk of electronic cigarettes
and compared with smoking my view is
that it's going to be well under five
percent of the risk possibly slightly
more for cardiovascular disease but
substantially less for chronic
obstructive pulmonary disease and lung
cancer so we can be confident that
electronic cigarettes are much less
hazardous than tobacco cigarettes where
their safety lies relative to not using
anything is much harder to place
inhaling a vapor many times a day for
decades is unlikely to come without some
sort of adverse effect and time will
tell what that will be it will be better
avoided but from the smokers perspective
in a far better bet than carry on
smoking tobacco these cigarettes are
substantially less harmful than
cigarettes and the reason that we can
reasonably infer this is because of the
concentration of chemicals that are in
the e-cigarette vapor compared with the
chemicals that are in cigarette smoke
and when you look at the concentrations
of and the nature of the toxins in
cigarette smoke and then you compare
that with these cigarettes you see that
really there's there's no comparison
most of the toxins in cigarette smoke
aren't present at all in a cigarette
vapor those that are present during
present concentrations that are a
hundred times less or more flavorings
are necessary for electronic cigarettes
because people wouldn't use them if they
didn't have some sort of flavors added
and we need to entice smokers to use
electronic cigarettes now some concerns
have been raised about for example the
risks that might be attaching to the
flavorings in a cigarette paper but
again these are flavorings that have
been tested and the concentrations are
sufficiently low that we wouldn't expect
them to pose a significant health risk
the propylene glycol and glycerol that
are in electronic cigarette fluid are
there respectively to carry the nicotine
in the vapor and also to give the vapor
a cloud appearance so you can actually
see it when you breathe
both are widely used in other
applications propylene glycol is that is
used to make theater fog it is mildly
written to the airway but doesn't seem
to have any lasting long-term effects
glycerol likewise is widely used in
foods and again there's no evidence or
reason to expect that it will have a
significant long-term effect on the
airway there have been stories about
breathing in other people's electronic
cigarette vapor being harmful but I've
not seen any evidence that breathing in
vapor is harmful to people there is
evidence that if you room with somebody
using one of these products that there
is nicotine and perhaps other chemicals
in the atmosphere around you but at tiny
levels levels low enough not to to be
concerned by at all it's not anything
like secondhand smoke the combustion
caused by tobacco we know releases
particles and other compounds into the
air which really are harmful to people
who are besides somebody who's smoking
that's not the case with vaping it's
much more - in my mind a matter of
courtesy I think if you're in a inflow
space and somebody's breathing out
clouds of vapor that's just unpleasant
and it's intrusive it's discourteous but
equally I've been in public places where
people have been using electronic
cigarettes sitting opposite me on a
train for example with no cloud of vapor
when they exhale and I can't distinguish
the difference between that and then
perhaps inhaling from a reliever inhaler
for asthma I mean the press has had a
field day with cigarettes it's a new
technology millions of people are using
it or thinking about using it and shock
horror stories are the stuff of the
modern media almost everything I've seen
has been hyped wildly out of proportion
you know to get people to click on
stories and the rest almost none of the
stories holds any water or should give
any cause for concern there been a
number of press reports about
e-cigarettes exploding and charges
exploding and Catching Fire for example
now these are electrical products and
any electrical product must conform to
the kind of safety requirements that we
would expect from any consumer product
so you see a similar kind of thing with
mobile phones for example so I don't
think there's anything particular about
e-cigarettes in this regard
people do occasionally have batteries
catch fire or explode or whatever and
but that's typically because they're
doing daft things with them they've got
two or three batteries sitting in their
pocket rattling around with a load of
coins you get a short-circuit and boom
next thing you know there's a fire and
explosion against that that we have to
remember that cigarettes caused
thousands of fires and deaths every year
through fire you know people falling
asleep in bed smoking next thing they
know they're duvet and their mattress is
on fire and they're calling the fire
brigade all their dead different people
quit smoking in different ways for some
an abrupt change is is desirable and
effective others are less confident or
for whatever reason don't feel ready
just to say that's it I'm not gonna
smoke again and they just need that
period of time to become adjusted to it
some need convincing that actually the
electronic cigarette or other nicotine
product can do the job there is some
evidence that smokers who weren't
intending to stop smoking do take up
e-cigarettes and then quit smoking
completely and this is particularly
important to think for groups where
smoking has remained very very high so I
do think they offer a way of stopping
smoking for those who aren't even
intending did you say there be concerns
about what people call dual-use that's
using an e-cigarette and smoking as well
and that is part of the concern is that
well maybe they just end up with more
nicotine or more toxins than they would
otherwise get but the evidence to date
shows that actually that's not what
happens that when you look at the
nicotine intake for
sample from people who using an
e-cigarette and smoking at the same time
then it's roughly the same as it was in
when people are smoking but of course
they're getting some of that nicotine
from an e-cigarette so they're not in
with that nicotine getting the levels of
toxins they would have got from their
cigarettes the most effective way of
quitting is to use a medication such as
nicotine replacement therapy or it could
be electronic cigarettes combined with
behavioral supports of the type you get
in the stop smoking services I think
where each cigarettes come in is their
popularity they're there for people who
don't necessarily want to get that kind
of support they just want to go out to a
shop and buy product which they can use
to stop smoking without staying a health
professional they aren't really a
medication they're not for people who
consider themselves ill and they're not
usually taken in a medical setting that
consumer products they're designed to be
fun and interesting to use they have
lots of opportunities for personalizing
the experience you can choose your own
flavor they replace many of the things
that cigarettes do like you know being
able to use them at a certain time of
day that you like or the hunter mouth
movement so that what they're doing is
recreating a lot of the smoking
experience and how you feel about it but
without all the harm some people say
that the advent of electronic cigarettes
has renormalizing tobacco smoking so we
see people using these devices and it's
making smoking a more normal again
interestingly we're just not seeing that
in the data we have the first thing to
emphasize is that smoking rates are
going down across the UK in both adults
and in young people and if electronic
cigarettes were renormalizing smoking
those numbers would be stalled or
they'll be going back up again and
that's not happening I think the idea
that e-cigarettes on how renormalize
smoking is completely bizarre it's an
alternative to smoking you know you see
e-cigarettes it's advertising cigarettes
it's advertising or promoting an
alternative to smoking
how about encourages people to smoke has
never been explained and of course
there's no
whatsoever that it actually is that
winning reality what it's doing is
encouraging people the more they see it
the more they know people the more it's
encouraging people to try a cigarette
snot to continue to smoke it's extremely
clear when you watch somebody using an
electronic cigarette that they're using
an electronic cigarette so all of it
does is normalize electronic cigarette
use and if we could normalize electronic
cigarette use for that nearly nine
million people in the United Kingdom are
still addicted to tobacco that could
only be a good thing
the future for e-cigarettes and for
smokers could be very bright indeed if
we get the regulation of these products
right and we have another 20 years of
amazing innovation in these technologies
I can see them effectively obsoleting
smoking I think they will be become so
good there'll be such an effective
replacement for smoking that no one will
want to smoke this is a product that can
transform health smokers not all smokers
but enough smokers to matter find
electronic cigarettes an effective
substitute for smoking and if they make
the complete switch to electronic
cigarettes health-wise they achieve
pretty much what they've achieved as if
they quit smoking completely so the
challenge is to get as many smokers to
try and go down that route not to start
trying to restrict or prevent uptake of
electronic cigarettes they're a game
changer there's no going back from that
the whole market in nicotine delivery
has been radicalized by these products
and I just hope that there are more and
even more exciting products on the way I
think it's really important that people
be reassured that e-cigarettes whatever
you might see in the press are
considerably safer than smoking and the
evidence is pretty good that they can be
effective in helping people to stop