National Academies Press: OpenBook

Public Health Consequences of E-Cigarettes (2018)

Chapter: Section II Effects of E-Cigarettes on Health

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Suggested Citation:"Section II Effects of E-Cigarettes on Health." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Public Health Consequences of E-Cigarettes. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24952.
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Page 177
Suggested Citation:"Section II Effects of E-Cigarettes on Health." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Public Health Consequences of E-Cigarettes. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/24952.
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Page 178

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Section II Effects of E-Cigarettes on Health Although laboratory tests of e-cigarette ingredients, in vitro toxicological tests, and short-term human studies suggest that e-cigarettes are likely less harmful than combustible tobacco cigarettes, due to lack of long-term epidemiological studies and large clinical trials, the implications for long-term effects on morbidity and mortality are not yet clear and the absolute safety of the products cannot be unambiguously assessed at this time. Use of e-cigarettes instead of combustible tobacco cigarettes by those with existing respiratory disease might be less harmful. 7 MODES OF ACTION 8 DEPENDENCE AND ABUSE LIABILITY 9 CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASES 10 CANCER 11 RESPIRATORY DISEASES 12 ORAL DISEASES 13 DEVELOPMENTAL AND REPRODUCTIVE EFFECTS 14 INJURIES AND POISONINGS 15 RESEARCH NEEDS: EFFECTS OF E-CIGARETTES ON HEALTH PREPUBLICATION COPY: UNCORRECTED PROOFS

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Millions of Americans use e-cigarettes. Despite their popularity, little is known about their health effects. Some suggest that e-cigarettes likely confer lower risk compared to combustible tobacco cigarettes, because they do not expose users to toxicants produced through combustion. Proponents of e-cigarette use also tout the potential benefits of e-cigarettes as devices that could help combustible tobacco cigarette smokers to quit and thereby reduce tobacco-related health risks. Others are concerned about the exposure to potentially toxic substances contained in e-cigarette emissions, especially in individuals who have never used tobacco products such as youth and young adults. Given their relatively recent introduction, there has been little time for a scientific body of evidence to develop on the health effects of e-cigarettes.

Public Health Consequences of E-Cigarettes reviews and critically assesses the state of the emerging evidence about e-cigarettes and health. This report makes recommendations for the improvement of this research and highlights gaps that are a priority for future research.

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