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Many Teens 'Vaping' for Flavor, Not Nicotine

Posted 2 days 11 hours ago by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Aug. 25, 2016 – Why are American teens tempted to try an e-cigarette? A new study suggests most are interested in the vaping product's flavoring, not nicotine. A team led by Richard Miech, of the University of Michigan's Institute for Social Research, tracked the responses of nearly 15,000 students who took part in a 2015 U.S. nationwide survey. More than 3,800 of the students – who were in grades 8, 10 and 12 – said they had used e-cigarettes at some point. Of those who had used e-cigarettes within the past month, more than 1,700 had done so at least once; nearly 1,100 had done so up to five times; and more than 600 had done so more than half a dozen times, the findings showed. Among the students who had ever used e-cigarettes, two-thirds used the device where a non-nicotine, flavored ingredient was used, the survey found. Nicotine came in at a distant second: Used by 13 ... Read more

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Doctors Divided on Safety, Use of Electronic Cigarettes

Posted 2 days 11 hours ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Aug. 26, 2016 – Doctors disagree on the best way to answer patients' questions about electronic cigarettes, a new study finds. They also want more investigation of the devices – specifically, about the safety of e-cigarettes compared to traditional cigarettes, according to the Stanford University researchers. While traditional cigarettes deliver nicotine when the smoker inhales burning tobacco, e-cigarettes heat liquid nicotine until it vaporizes. Researchers analyzed more than 500 online discussions between doctors and patients about e-cigarettes. About 34 percent of patient questions were about the side effects and dangers of e-cigarettes; 27 percent were about general safety; and 19 percent about using e-cigarettes to stop smoking. Side effects and safety were also the most common topics that doctors raised. But doctors were more likely to raise concerns about nicotine ... Read more

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Fewer Cancer-Causing Chemicals in E-Cigs Than Regular Cigarettes: Study

Posted 10 days ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Aug. 19, 2016 – Smokers who switch to electronic cigarettes get the same levels of nicotine, but lower levels of toxins and cancer-causing chemicals, new research shows. "This study suggests that smokers who completely switch to e-cigarettes and stop smoking tobacco cigarettes may significantly reduce their exposure to many cancer-causing chemicals," said lead author Maciej Goniewicz, an assistant professor of oncology at Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo, N.Y. The researchers recruited 20 daily-smoking adults who had smoked for an average of 12 years. For two weeks, they used e-cigarettes instead of tobacco cigarettes. During that time, their urine was analyzed for levels of nicotine and 17 "biomarkers" of toxins and carcinogens. Significant declines in 12 of the 17 biomarkers were noted during those two weeks. The declines were similar to those seen when people quit ... Read more

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This Key Neighborhood Factor May Help Smokers Quit

Posted 14 days ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Aug. 15, 2016 – The inconvenience of having to walk farther to the nearest cigarette vendor might be enough to help smokers quit, a new study suggests. Researchers in Finland tracked data on almost 21,000 current and former smokers. The investigators wanted to see how changes in the walking distance from home to the nearest tobacco shop affected smoking behavior. The result: For every added one-third of a mile the smoker had to walk, there was a 20 to 60 percent increase in his or her odds of quitting the habit, the study found. Increasing the distance needed to buy cigarettes had no impact on whether a former smoker would resume the habit, however. And the study couldn't prove cause-and-effect, it could only point to an association. The research was led by Anna Pulakka of the University of Turku, and published online Aug. 15 in JAMA Internal Medicine. One expert at helping ... Read more

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Starting Monday, FDA Banning E-Cigarette Sales to Minors

Posted 8 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Aug. 8, 2016 – The sale of e-cigarettes to minors will be banned starting Monday, as part of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's long-awaited plan to extend the agency's regulatory powers across all tobacco products. The new rules halt the sale of e-cigarettes and any other tobacco product to anyone younger than 18. The regulations also require photo IDs to buy e-cigarettes, and ban retailers from handing out free samples or selling them in all-ages vending machines. The rules also cover other alternative forms of tobacco like cigars, hookah tobacco and pipe tobacco. Electronic cigarettes are battery-operated devices designed to create an aerosol that delivers nicotine, flavor and other chemicals when inhaled by the user. Manufacturers have marketed the products as a way to help smokers quit cigarettes. But, opponents contend that the nicotine-laden e-cigarettes actually ... Read more

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Why Teens Choose E-Cigarettes

Posted 8 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Aug. 8, 2016 – Teenagers try e-cigarettes the first time for very teen-related reasons – they're curious, friends use them, and there are lots of different flavors that taste good. But the teens most likely to keep using e-cigarettes do so for very practical reasons, a new study suggests. The low cost of the devices and the promise they can help teens quit smoking tobacco are the two strong predictors of continued use, said senior researcher Suchitra Krishnan-Sarin. She is a professor of psychiatry at Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, Conn. Teens who initially tried e-cigarettes because of their low cost had significantly stepped up their use of e-cigarettes by the time researchers checked in six months later. In addition, teens who tried e-cigarettes to quit smoking were more than 14 times more likely to keep using e-cigarettes than those who did not consider ... Read more

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Quitting Smoking While Pregnant: What Works

Posted 28 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, July 27, 2016 – Use of nicotine patches or the drug Zyban helps pregnant women quit smoking before and after they give birth, a new study says. "In public health terms, these results are significant because one in five pregnant women smokes," said study author Anick Berard, a professor with the Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Montreal. "We already know that smoking during pregnancy increases the chances of miscarriage as well as low birth weight, premature birth and birth defects – events that are linked to health problems in children," Berard said in a university news release. However, the study authors added that pregnant women or those looking to become pregnant should check with their doctor before taking any medication. The new study results will give pregnant women evidence-based options to quit smoking, Berard said. They'll "also give data to health care ... Read more

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Is Pot Harder on the Heart Than Tobacco?

Posted 27 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, July 27, 2016 – Smoking pot might harm your heart health and that of the people around you – perhaps even more than cigarettes, a new animal study suggests. Lab rats experienced a severe reduction in their blood vessel function after a minute's exposure to secondhand smoke from either tobacco or marijuana, researchers said. But it took the rats three times longer to recover from a minute of secondhand marijuana smoke, compared with tobacco smoke, the researchers found. "If people think marijuana smoke is somehow exempt from the harmful effects of tobacco and many other kinds of smoke, this is evidence that it is not," said study senior author Matthew Springer, a professor of medicine in the division of cardiology at the University of California, San Francisco. The rats' arteries carried blood less efficiently for at least 90 minutes following exposure to marijuana smoke, ... Read more

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E-Cig Liquid Nicotine Containers Often Mislabeled

Posted 27 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, July 27, 2016 – Containers that hold liquid nicotine for electronic cigarettes may not be labeled with the correct amount of nicotine, a new study says. And as many as two-thirds of these containers may not be child-resistant, the researchers found. Consuming even small amounts of liquid nicotine can harm a child, the scientists said. "Mislabeling of nicotine in e-liquids exposes the user to the harmful effects of nicotine," said study author Kelly Buettner-Schmidt, an associate professor of nursing at North Dakota State University. "In areas without child-resistant packaging requirements, children may be exposed to harmful nicotine," she said in a university news release. The researchers checked 93 e-cigarette liquid containers from 16 stores in North Dakota. They found that 70 were labeled containing nicotine amounts ranging from 3 to 24 milligrams per milliliter (mg/mL). ... Read more

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E-Cigarettes Emit Toxic Vapors: Study

Posted 27 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, July 27, 2016 – All electronic cigarettes emit harmful chemicals, and levels of those toxic compounds are affected by factors such as temperature, type and age of the device, a new study finds. The findings could be important to both makers of e-cigarettes and regulators who want to reduce the health threat posed by the devices, according to researchers at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California. "Advocates of e-cigarettes say emissions are much lower than from conventional cigarettes, so you're better off using e-cigarettes," study corresponding author Hugo Destaillats said in a Berkeley news release. "I would say, that may be true for certain users – for example, long-time smokers that cannot quit – but the problem is, it doesn't mean that they're healthy. Regular cigarettes are super unhealthy. E-cigarettes are just unhealthy," he explained. In ... Read more

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'Cool' Factor Often Spurs Teens to Try E-Cigarettes

Posted 18 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, July 18, 2016 – E-cigarette makers say the products can help adults stop smoking, but new research suggests many teens use the devices because they seem cool, new and fun. "While e-cigarettes are frequently used as devices for smoking cessation in adults, we found most students in our survey [including 47.8 percent of those who recently smoked cigarettes] were motivated by the 'cool/fun/something new' features of e-cigarettes," the study authors wrote. Dr. Michael Khoury, a pediatric cardiology resident at Stollery Children's Hospital in Edmonton, Canada, led the research during a previous residency at The Hospital for Sick Children and the University of Toronto. The study involved nearly 2,400 students in Ontario, aged 14 and 15. The teens were asked about their e-cigarette use, including why they tried them and how often they used them. Seven out of 10 respondents, almost ... Read more

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1 in 5 Americans Uses a Tobacco Product

Posted 15 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, July 14, 2016 – Despite decades of declines in smoking rates in the United States, one in five Americans still smokes or uses hookahs, e-cigarettes or other tobacco products, U.S. health officials reported Thursday. Cigarettes remain the most popular, but the emergence of hookah and e-cigarette use, especially among younger adults, is cause for concern, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report said. Findings from the 2013-2014 survey underscore the need "to educate the public about the potential harms of all tobacco product use, including risks associated with occasional use," CDC researcher Dr. Sean Hu and colleagues wrote. Noting that e-cigarettes were used most often by 18- to 24-year-olds, the study authors suggested advertising and misleading marketing claims are to blame. Patricia Folan, director of the Center for Tobacco Control at Northwell Health in ... Read more

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Smoking in Pregnancy May Be Under-Reported

Posted 9 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, July 7, 2016 – A significantly higher percentage of American women may be smoking while pregnant than researchers have previously believed, a new study suggests. The finding is based on urine tests that can measure nicotine exposure compared to what pregnant women report about their smoking habits. "We have long suspected that smoking status during pregnancy is under-reported," study senior author Dr. Jim Greenberg, director of the Perinatal Institute at Cincinnati Children's Hospital, said in a hospital news release. "But now we know just how many women struggle to quit smoking when they are pregnant," he added. Smoking while pregnant boosts the risk for premature birth by as much as 25 percent, the study authors noted. Smoking is also associated with the three most common causes of infant death. It's also considered to be a risk factor for both sudden infant death syndrome ... Read more

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Mixing Pot and Tobacco Increases Dependence Risk: Study

Posted 6 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, July 5, 2016 – People who mix marijuana with tobacco are at greater risk for dependency and less motivated to find support to quit these drugs, researchers report. One billion people around the globe use tobacco and 182 million people smoke pot, making these two of the world's most popular drugs, according to the World Health Organization and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. Many people mix the two drugs together to save money. Tobacco also makes pot inhalation more efficient. This practice, however, may increase the likelihood that users become dependent, the researchers found. "Cannabis dependence and tobacco dependence manifest in similar ways, so it is often difficult to separate these out in people who use both drugs," said study lead author Chandni Hindocha. "Cannabis is less addictive than tobacco, but we show here that mixing tobacco with cannabis lowers ... Read more

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E-Cigs May Damage Cells in Mouth

Posted 1 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, June 30, 2016 – Many people think electronic cigarettes are a safer alternative to tobacco cigarettes, but a new study suggests that's not the case. In laboratory experiments on cultured cells, researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles, found that toxic substances and nanoparticles in e-cigarette vapors caused 85 percent of the tested cells to die. They said it's possible these substances can kill the top layer of skin cells in the oral cavity. The oral cavity is the portion of the mouth behind the teeth and gums. The researchers believe that similar results would be found in tests on people, and said they're planning a human study to confirm their findings. If confirmed, the researchers said that e-cigarettes could increase users' risk of oral disease. "A small but significant portion of dental patients at UCLA Dental Clinics have used e-cigarettes, which ... Read more

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