Electronic cigarettes as risky as nicotine gums and patches
Good news for the vapers: according to a study published this Tuesday and conducted by American and British researchers, the electronic cigarette would be as risky as gums or nicotine patches. On the other hand, for those who alternate steam and smoke, the risks related to tobacco remain the same.
A study conducted by researchers at University College London and published this Tuesday in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine , the first of its kind conducted in the long term, concludes that the electronic cigarette contains very few toxic substances compared to the conventional cigarette. It would therefore reinforce the use of the electronic cigarette to replace tobacco. The study also shows that inhaling steam would be as risky as consuming other types of nicotine substitutes such as gums or nicotine patches.
Alan, a 22-year-old Parisian, says he felt the difference when he switched to e-cigarettes. As he smoked two packets a day, the young man began to get scared for his health.
“At the level of breath, I had nothing,” he told BFMTV. For 5 months, Alan completely replaced the cigarette by the vaporette. “Since I use the electronic cigarette, the breath is coming in. I’m not coughing anymore, there’s no problem at that level anymore.”
While 51.6% of Europeans rate e-cigarettes as dangerous, study says last year, the study’s authors show that, based on urine and saliva tests on 181 participants, only former smokers who switched to the electronic cigarette have seen their concentration of toxic products in the body decrease considerably .
“We have shown, through our work, that the level of toxic substances in the body from electronic cigarettes, is considerably lower than in previous studies.This means that doubts about the health risks of e-cigarettes can be challenged, “says Lion Shabab, co-author of the report.
According to Alison Cox, Director of Cancer Research UK, “this study highlights that the use of e-cigarettes as a replacement for tobacco is a good alternative for health in the long term”.
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Same degree of toxicity as patches or gums
In addition, according to the saliva and urine analyzes of the “vaping” participants, the toxic compounds are not greater than those of the ex-smokers using nicotine patches or chewing gums.
Professor Bertrand Dautzenberg, a pulmonologist at the Pitié-Salpêtrière hospital in Paris, admits that smokers who want to get rid of tobacco can be advised to adopt the electronic cigarette:
“We do not yet have all the medical studies necessary for a doctor to recommend it to you, but as a good father, it’s obvious that it’s infinitely less dangerous.” In this study, we have a danger that is the same. the type of nicotine substitute, namely patches or nicotine gums, which can be taken in a reassured way, “he says.
Alternate tobacco and e-cigarette is still dangerous
However, to benefit from these positive effects, it is necessary for users to permanently leave the conventional cigarette.
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“There are no gains when the electronic cigarette is used in continuity with tobacco,” says Jean-Philippe Santoni, a volunteer respirologist at the Fondation du souffle.
The study shows that the level of nitrosamines, the carcinogenic substances involved in lung cancer, is reduced by 97% in exclusive vapers compared to smokers, while providing almost the same level of nicotine. “It can help people quit smoking by offsetting their cravings with a lower-risk substitute,” says the study’s contributor.
A study that contradicts other reports
The test conducted on 181 participants, however, is unrepresentative of the population and certainly deserves further studies to confirm the lower effects of the electronic cigarette on health.
According to the University of Portland study in January 2015, the more the liquid is heated, the more carcinogen is present in the inhaled vapor.
In February 2016, several electronic cigarettes exploded causing the High Council of Public Health to ban its use in public places . According to this same entity, the electronic cigarette remains an initiation to smoking and is only recommended as part of smoking cessation.
Today, two million French people use an electronic cigarette daily.