Archive for the ‘E-cigarettes’ Category

E-Cigarettes More Cancerous Than Cigarettes Think Again, ‘Vaping’ Advocates Claim

E-cigarettes were revealed to have 10 times the amount of carcinogens as traditional cigarettes in a recent study, but vaping advocates note that the previous study is deceptive.

 First, let’s look at the background.

The Inquisitr recently reported on the e-cigarettes cancer study, noting that researchers in Japan were commissioned by Japan’s Health Ministry to do the study. They discovered that carcinogens such as formaldehyde and acetaldehyde were present in the vapor produced by several brands of e-cigarettes.

Formaldehyde is found in building materials and embalming fluid. Scientists found the levels of formaldehyde were much higher in e-cigarettes compared to regular cigarettes.

One brand of e-cigarette studied had 10 times the carcinogens contained in formaldehyde.

“Especially when the… wire (which vaporizes the liquid) gets overheated, higher amounts those harmful substances seemed to be produced,” the study stated.

The E-Cigarette Advocates Research Group issued a statement calling into question the study’s importance.

“Interestingly, while all news-media discuss about carcinogens (plural), the text mentions only formaldehyde. To tell the whole truth, this ‘substance found in building materials and embalming fluids’ is in reality present everywhere in the environment, in every house, in every city, town, village, urban or rural area. So, all the noise in the newsmedia is about one carcinogen, not some carcinogens. Moreover, the title is nothing but misleading since they found the formaldehyde at ’10 levels higher than cigarettes’ in 1 of the 10 products tested, not in every case.”

A 2008 look at the results used in the analysis showed that traditional cigarettes had six times more formaldehyde than the highest quantity found in the e-cigarettes from the recent study.

“While we still need to see the levels of carbonyls generated from high-power e-cigarette use (using appropriate atomizers of course), the message concerning all this media frenzy is clear,” said the group’s spokesperson. “Even in the worst-case Japanese product, e-cigarette aerosol contained 6 times lower formaldehyde levels compared to tobacco cigarette smoke. Where does the ’10 times higher than smoking’ statement comes from? I have no idea.”

The group did state that the author of the newest study, Professor Kunugita, contacted them in response to pointing out the discrepancy and noted that the latest study bases its findings on a newer model “in which he found 1600μg formaldehyde per 15 puffs.”

To that, the advocacy group responded.

“It is true that this level is 10 times higher than what is present in tobacco cigarettes. However, this is an unpublished result, a single extreme case out of the many products he tested, and we do not know what went wrong in that case (e.g. high power levels, low levels of liquid inside, malfunctioning device etc). Still, the media frenzy is completely inappropriate.”

Read more at http://www.inquisitr.com/1645775/e-cigarettes-more-cancerous-than-cigarettes-think-again-vaping-advocates-claim/#jD6LK87G0sDkB1lB.99

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E-cigarettes contain up to 10 times the level of cancer-causing agents in regular tobacco, Japanese scientists said Thursday, the latest blow to an invention once heralded as less harmful than smoking.

The electronic devices — increasingly popular around the world, particularly among young people — function by heating flavoured liquid, which often contains nicotine, into a vapour that is inhaled, much like traditional cigarettes but without the smoke.

Researchers commissioned by Japan’s Health Ministry found carcinogens such as formaldehyde and acetaldehyde in vapour produced by several types of e-cigarette liquid, a health ministry official told AFP.

Formaldehyde — a substance found in building materials and embalming fluids — was present at much higher levels than carcinogens found in the smoke from regular cigarettes, the official said.

“In one brand of e-cigarette the team found more than 10 times the level of carcinogens contained in one regular cigarette,” said researcher Naoki Kunugita, adding that the amount of formaldehyde detected varied through the course of analysis.

“Especially when the… wire (which vaporises the liquid) gets overheated, higher amounts of those harmful substances seemed to be produced.”

Kunugita and his team at the National Institute of Public Health, who submitted their report to the ministry on Thursday, analysed several cartridges of e-cigarette fluid using a machine that “inhaled” 10 sets of 15 puffs.

One brand, the name of which was not revealed, showed a more than 10-fold level of formaldehyde on nine out of every 10 sets.

Another brand showed similar levels on several sets, but was not consistently that high.

Kunugita said the research showed e-cigarettes are not the harmless products many people assume them to be.

“We need to be aware that some makers are selling such products for dual use (with tobacco) or as a gateway for young people” to start a smoking habit, he warned.

In common with many jurisdictions, Japan does not regulate non-nicotine e-cigarettes.

– ‘Serious threat’ –

Nicotine e-cigarettes, or so-called Electronic Nicotine Delivery System (ENDS), are subjected to the country’s pharmaceutical laws, but they can be bought easily on the Internet, although they are not readily available in shops as they are in some Western countries.

“You call them e-cigarettes, but they are products totally different from regular tobacco,” the ministry official said.

“The government is now studying the possible risks associated with them, with view to looking at how they should be regulated.”

In August, the World Health Organisation called on governments to ban the sale of e-cigarettes to minors, warning they pose a “serious threat” to unborn babies and young people.

Despite scant research on their effects, the WHO said there was enough evidence “to caution children and adolescents, pregnant women, and women of reproductive age” about e-cigarette use, due to the “potential for foetal and adolescent nicotine exposure (having) long-term consequences for brain development”.

The UN health body also said they should be banned from indoor public spaces.

US health authorities said earlier this year that the number of young people there who have tried e-cigarettes tripled from 2011 to 2013.

More than a quarter of a million young people who had never smoked a cigarette used e-cigarettes last year, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said.

Supporters of e-cigarettes say the devices are a safer alternative to traditional tobacco, whose bouquet of toxic chemicals and gases can cause cancer, heart disease and strokes — among the leading causes of death in many countries.

But opponents say the devices have only been around for a few years, and the long-term health impact from inhaling their industrial vapour is unclear.

Big tobacco companies are snapping up producers of e-cigarettes, wary of missing out on a snowballing global market worth about $3 billion.

Earlier this month, Oxford Dictionaries picked “vape”– the act of smoking an e-cigarette — as their new word of the year.

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LONDON (Reuters) – British scientists say they have found the best way yet to analyze the effects of smoking on the brain — by taking functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scans of people while they puff on e-cigarettes.

In a small pilot study, the researchers used electronic cigarettes, or e-cigarettes, to mimic the behavioral aspects of smoking tobacco cigarettes, and say future studies could help scientists understand why smoking is so addictive.

E-cigarettes use battery-powered cartridges to produce a nicotine-laced vapor to inhale — hence the new term “vaping”.

Their use has rocketed in recent years, but there is fierce debate about the risks and benefits. Some public health experts say they could help millions quit tobacco cigarettes, while others argue they could “normalize” the habit and lure children into smoking.

While that argument rages, tobacco kills some 6 million people a year, and the World Health Organization estimates that could rise beyond 8 million by 2030.

Matt Wall, an imaging scientist at Imperial College London who led the study using e-cigarettes, said he was not aiming to pass judgment on their rights or wrongs, but to use them to dig deeper into smoking addiction.

The fact that other forms of nicotine replacement therapy, such as patches or gum, have had only limited success in getting hardened smokers to quit suggests they are hooked on more than just nicotine, he noted.

“There’s something unique about the drug (nicotine) and the delivery system — the smoking — combined which makes it really, really addictive,” he told Reuters.

And by analyzing the brains of people “smoking” or “vaping” e-cigarettes, scientists can study the brain effects of what he called the “the behavioral and sensory repertoire of smoking”.

Until now, it was impossible to monitor these effects with conventional cigarettes due to the difficulty of having people smoke in the confined space of an MRI scanner.

But because e-cigarettes produce water vapor and do not burn, Wall’s team could record brain activity with each drag.

Wall said the study was not large enough to draw any firm conclusions yet, although it did show interesting activity in brain areas linked to reward and addiction, and in areas involved in perception of taste and smell.

“E-cigarettes … provide a very good simulation of traditional smoking (and) we have shown that using e-cigarettes with fMRI is an excellent paradigm for direct evaluation of the effects of smoking on human neurophysiology,” he said.

The plan now is to conduct larger studies using “vapers”.

Wall’s findings were due to be presented on Tuesday at the Global Addiction Conference in Rio de Janeiro.

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Toronto’s medical officer of health wants the city to ban the use of e-cigarettes anywhere smoking is prohibited if the province doesn’t enact its own legislation to restrict their use by next year.

Dr. David McKeown would like to see the province prohibit the electronic devices anywhere smoking is prohibited, and restrict sales to minors.

And if the province fails to act by next February, he’d like to see the city pass its own bylaws.

A Toronto Public Health report has raised concerns about e-cigarette safety and exposure to second-hand smoke.

E-cigarettes are battery operated devices that mimic the use — and sometimes the appearance — of tobacco cigarettes. They do not contain tobacco and produce vapour instead of smoke.

While proponents of e-cigarettes say they offer a safer alternative to smoking, health officials are concerned they normalize smoking behaviour, initiate young people to smoking and can undermine existing tobacco control laws.

McKeown’s report also warns e-cigarettes are increasingly being marketed to younger consumers.

E-cigarettes that contain nicotine are regulated under the Food and Drug Act and must be approved for sale by Health Canada. While no such e-cigarettes have market authorization in Canada, McKeown says they are easy to obtain “whether through certain retailers or online.”

Some tout e-cigarettes as a way for smokers to quit or cut back, but McKeown’s report says their effectiveness as a cessation aid “has not been proven.”

McKeown’s report will be considered by the Toronto Board of health meeting on Aug. 18.

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