Are Vapers At Risk From Hazardous Metals?



A group of researchers from Johns Hopkins and other universities are getting a lot of attention with a study that claims to show dangerous levels of various metals in e-cigarette vapor.

The press release was in newsrooms before the study had even been published, and the researchers were on the phone with reporters before the ink on the press release was dry. And the story is still spreading. Unfortunately, most reporters simply repeat the authors’ version of what the results mean, and don’t bother seeking out experts who might challenge the paper’s conclusions. And they definitely need challenging.

“Toxic metals linked with brain damage are ‘leaking from e-cigarettes into vapour’, experts have found,” said The Mirror. “Oh good, e-cigarette vapor contains toxic metals, too,” shouted the sarcastic Mashable banner. And those weren’t even the worst headlines.

Do the headlines match the study’s findings? And, for that matter, do the researchers’ own conclusions even describe the findings of the research? (more…)

Scientist Exposes ‘Sham’ Methodology Linking E-Cigarettes To Smoking

Scientist Exposes ‘Sham’ Methodology Linking E-Cigarettes To Smoking

Vaping Study Wrong
A Swiss study claiming vaping can lead to smoking and harms current smokers’ chance of quitting suffers from “fatal” flaws, and the paper’s conclusions are misrepresentative, according to a leading public health expert.

“We found no beneficial effects of vaping at follow-up for either smoking cessation or smoking reduction,” the authors conclude in the study.

But Dr. Michael Siegel, a professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences, Boston University School of Public Health, has written a damning critique of the study, which was published in Swiss Medical Weekly.

“Instead, the study measures – at follow-up – whether the participants had used an electronic cigarette any time in the past year,” he continued. “They could have used an e-cigarette for the first time the previous day, for example, and would still be considered as vapers in the analysis.” (RELATED: CDC Data Blows Away Popular E-Cigarette Criticism)

Siegel points out that the researchers don’t compare the changes in smoking behavior over time between vapers and non-vapers. The study only measures changes in smoking over the past year and whether the subjects had ever used an e-cigarette. So, in Siegel’s words, the “study methods do not allow the investigators to determine which came first.”

“Because it is a cross-sectional study, it is impossible to know whether the change in smoking status preceded the use of electronic cigarettes or whether the use of electronic cigarettes preceded the smoking status change,” he wrote.

This omission is critical, as it casts severe doubt over the claim that e-cigarettes are a cause of smoking initiation or failure to quit. The second fatal flaw is that the question used to assess vaping behavior only asked about ever use of e-cigarettes,” Siegel wrote. “It does not assess the frequency of use or its duration. According to the methodology, participants were merely asked whether they had ‘used’ e-cigarettes at any point in the past 12 months.”

But the term “used” was not clarified. Vapers, as defined in the study, included anyone who so much as tried one e-cigarette. “It is entirely possible that many of the participants who the study called vapers were actually not vapers at all, but merely people who had tried an e-cigarette,” Siegel added. (RELATED: CDC Admits, No ‘Concrete’ Evidence E-Cigarettes Are Gateway To Smoking

Siegel’s criticism comes soon after a meta-study arguing that e-cigarettes made it harder for people quit smoking received widespread criticism from health professionals, and was branded an “unscientific hatchet Job.”

U.S. states urge FDA to ensure warnings on liquid nicotine products

An employee displays e-liquids phials with mirabelle (plum) and mango aromas for electronic cigarettes produced at the ''Vincent dans les Vapes'' factory in Pessac, near Bordeaux, October 9, 2013. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

Attorneys general of 33 U.S. states, including New York’s Eric Schneiderman, urged the Food and Drug Administration to ensure health warning labels on nicotine-containing liquids and other novel tobacco products.

The attorneys general in a letter on Tuesday urged the health regulator to take immediate action to stem the increasing incidence of liquid nicotine poisoning among children. (

The news comes more than three months after New York fined four makers of liquid nicotine used in electronic cigarettes over packaging that was too easy for children to open, in violation of a law enacted in 2014. (

More than 3,700 children exposed to liquid nicotine were reported at poison control centers in 2014, a sharp increase from previous years, according to the American Association of Poison Control Centers.

The cases reported included half of those related to poisoning of children under the age of five along with an 18-month-old toddler in New York who died after ingesting liquid nicotine.

The letter cited a survey in which 87 percent of adult respondents supported FDA requirements for child-resistant packaging for all e-cigarettes and liquid nicotine refills.

The e-cigarette industry has seen an increase in demand from young people and this increased usage has resulted in accidental poisonings from exposure to liquid nicotine.

Liquid nicotine comprises nicotine, which is extracted from tobacco and added with chemical additives. It is used in electronic cigarettes, which convert the liquid nicotine to a vapor inhaled by the user.

“Given the growing popularity of ‘tank’-style vaping devices, which require periodic refilling with liquid nicotine, public health threats from nicotine exposure will increase in the absence of appropriate FDA regulation,” the letter said


A Guide to E-Cigarette Etiquette (Or, How to Vape in Public Without Being a Jerk)

By Lindsay Fox Posted April 23, 2014

The issue of e-cigarette use in public places is a hot-button on both a political and a social level. While states mull indoor usage bans and incorporate e-cigs into existing smoke-free laws, vapers are left in a strange limbo when it comes to e-cigarette etiquette. Vaping doesn’t release the vast majority of harmful chemicals found in cigarette smoke, but to people who learn about e-cigarettes from scare-stories in the news, we can look like noxious, fog-breathing polluters. So what do we do? Should we vape freely when permitted by law and politely inform anybody who thinks it’s dangerous that they’re clearly hysterical, or skulk off into the smoking areas under the weight of unspoken social pressure? How do you vape in public without making e-cig users look like inconsiderate jerks?


The Science Behind Vaping

It’s been described by writer and broadcaster Will Self as “smoking digitised and rendered harmless”, and although this might be oversimplifying the process of taking in flavoured, chemical-laden mist rather than tobacco-flavoured, carcinogen-heavy smoke from tobacco, there’s no doubt that the groundswell of popular support has pushed vaping into the mainstream. (more…)

Vaping versus smoking – the case for e-cigarettes

  • The study found significant health benefits associated with switchingfrom tobacco to e-cigarette use, which were characteristicallymore prominent in those who had completely quit smoking comparedto those who only reduced their smoking consumption. Participantsreported that any side effects associated with e-cigarette use weremild and temporary

A recent worldwide study in favour of vaping indicates it can help smokers kick the habit

Many countries, including the UAE, have banned electronic cigarettes or e-cigarettes but a worldwide survey of 19,441 users in 2014 found it had minimal adverse effects (about 1/100th to 1/20th) compared with smoking. Those who switched to vaping from smoking reported a reduction in harmful effects, with very mild and temporary side effects.


How Big Vaping is misinforming the public about e-cigarettes

NEW YORK, NY – FEBRUARY 12: A model backstage at Ohne Titel during MADE Fashion Week fall 2015 at Milk Studios on February 12, 2015, in New York City. (Photo by Mireya Acierto/Getty Images) Mireya Acierto/Getty Images

California is the newest case study in the e-cigarette information wars. On Sunday, California’s public health department went live with an awareness campaign about e-cigarettes on a new website, Still Blowing Smoke. By the time of their official launch on Monday, vaping advocates were already on the offensive with a nearly identical site: Not Blowing Smoke.