Tags: electronic | cigarette | harm

Experts: E-cigarettes Damage Lungs

Tuesday, 04 September 2012 11:01 AM

Although electronic cigarettes are marketed as a potentially safer alternative to normal cigarettes, new research shows they can still harm the lungs.
The small study, presented by researchers from the University of Athens in Greece at the European Respiratory Society's Annual Congress in Vienna, adds new evidence to the debate over the safety of alternative nicotine-delivery products.
E-cigarettes are devices that deliver nicotine from tobacco through a vapor, rather than smoke. There has been debate over the safety of such products, but little scientific evidence to support either claim.
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For the new study, researchers evaluated the effects of e-cigarettes on eight people who had never smoked and 24 smokers – 11 with normal lung function and 13 people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or asthma.
Each person used an e-cigarette for 10 minutes and researchers then measured their airway resistance using a number of tests. The results showed that for all users, the e-cigarette caused an immediate increase in airway resistance, lasting for 10 minutes. In healthy subjects who never smoked, there was a statistically significant increase in airway resistance.
"We do not yet know whether unapproved nicotine delivery products, such as e-cigarettes, are safer than normal cigarettes, despite marketing claims that they are less harmful,” said researcher Christina Gratziou, chair of the European Respiratory Society’s Tobacco Control Committee. “This research helps us to understand how these products could be potentially harmful.
"We found an immediate rise in airway resistance in our group of participants, which suggests e-cigarettes can cause immediate harm after smoking the device. More research is needed to understand whether this harm also has lasting effects in the long-term.”
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New research challenges marketing claims that electronic cigarettes are a safer alternative to smoking.
Tuesday, 04 September 2012 11:01 AM
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