In a study published online ahead of print in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, researchers found that 31 percent of respondents reported having quit smoking six months after first purchasing an electronic cigarette, a battery-powered device providing tobacco-less doses of nicotine in a vaporized solution. The average six-month abstinence rate for traditional nicotine replacement products, such as nicotine patches or gum, is between 12 and 18 percent.
"This study suggests that electronic cigarettes are helping thousands of ex-smokers remain off cigarettes," said lead author Michael Siegel, professor of community health sciences.
The researchers conducted an online survey of 222 first-time purchasers of electronic cigarettes, also known as e-cigarettes, from a leading electronic cigarette distributor. Of those who were not smoking at six months, 34.3 percent reported not using electronic cigarettes or any nicotine-containing products. Almost 67 percent of respondents reported having reduced the number of cigarettes they smoked after using electronic cigarettes.
The study's main limitation is the low response rate of 4.5 percent. It is possible that those who responded to the survey were more likely to have quit smoking than those who did not respond. Nevertheless, despite this limitation, the study authors believe that this is the best evidence to date on the effectiveness of electronic cigarettes for smoking cessation.
They point out that this is the first survey that relied upon an unbiased sampling frame.
Despite the limitation, the authors conclude that electronic cigarettes "hold promise as a smoking-cessation method and that they are worthy of further study using more rigorous research designs."
While more study needs to be done on the actual mechanisms of what apparently makes electronic cigarettes effective, Siegel said he believes there might be a link between the e-cigarette's physical simulation of smoking with the success of quitting.
"While it is well-recognized that nicotine plays a role in smoking addiction, little attention has been given to the behavioral aspects of the addiction," he said. "These devices simulate the smoking experience, which appears to make them effective as a smoking cessation tool."
Electronic cigarettes have proven controversial since coming onto the market more than three years ago. A number of anti-smoking groups have argued that e-cigarettes should not be sold because they have not been shown to be effective for smoking cessation, and several states – including New York – are considering banning e-cigarettes altogether.
"Banning this product would invariably result in many ex-smokers returning to cigarette smoking," Siegel said. "Removing electronic cigarettes from the market would substantially harm the public's health."
The study was co-authored by Kerry L. Tanwar and Kathleen S. Wood, also of Boston University School of Public Health.
Siegel, MD, has 25 years of experience in the field of tobacco control and claims no financial interest in e-cigarettes.
(Note to editors of online publications/websites: Please include live links to Dr. Siegel and the School's website.)
For more information on Michael Siegel, please visit http://sph.bu.edu/mbsiegel.Boston University School of Public Health:
Elana Zak | EurekAlert!
New study: How does Europe become a leading player for software and IT services?
03.04.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für System- und Innovationsforschung (ISI)
Reusable carbon nanotubes could be the water filter of the future, says RIT study
30.03.2017 | Rochester Institute of Technology
More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.
Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...
Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.
"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...
The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.
Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...
The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...
Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.
Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...
20.04.2017 | Event News
18.04.2017 | Event News
03.04.2017 | Event News
25.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
25.04.2017 | Materials Sciences
25.04.2017 | Life Sciences