Public Health England (PHE) has issued a detailed report examining the health implications of e-cigarette use. Titled “Evidence Review of E-cigarettes and Heated Tobacco Products 2018”

The most eye-catching part of the report shows the health of using E-cigarettes and present a lot of real data that e-cigarettes represent only a little of the risk posed by smoking standard combustible cigarettes.

  • One assessment of the published data on emissions from cigarettes and E-CIGARETTES calculated the lifetime cancer risks. It concluded that the cancer potencies of E-CIGARETTES were largely under 0.5% of the risk of smoking.
  • Comparative risks of cardiovascular disease and lung disease have not been quantified but are likely to be also substantially below the risks of smoking. Among E-CIGARETTES users, two studies of biomarker data for acrolein, a potent respiratory irritant, found levels consistent with non-smoking levels.
  • There have been some studies with adolescents suggesting respiratory symptoms among E-CIGARETTES experimenters. However, small scale or uncontrolled switching studies from smoking to vaping have demonstrated some respiratory improvements.
  • E-CIGARETTES can release aldehydes if e-liquids are overheated, but the overheating generates an aversive taste.
  • To date, there is no clear evidence that specific flavourings pose health risks but there are suggestions that inhalation of some could be a source of preventable risks.
  • To date, the levels of metals identified in E-CIGARETTES aerosol do not give rise to any significant safety concerns, but metal emissions, however small, are unnecessary.
  • Biomarkers of exposure assessed to date are consistent with significant reductions in harmful constituents and for a few biomarkers assessed in this chapter, similar levels to smokers abstaining from smoking or non-smokers were observed.
  • One study showed no reductions across a range of biomarkers for dual users (either for nicotine replacement therapy or E-CIGARETTES dual users).
  • To date, there have been no identified health risks of passive vaping.

 

Although using E-cigarettes may not totally risk free, but the PHE report estimates that they may be 95% less dangerous than regular smoking.

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Eve Wang

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