Dr. Eugenio Greco,
Electronic cigarettes: A Policy Statement from the American Heart AssociationA. Bhatnagar et al. Circulation 2014; DOI: 10.1161/CIR.0000000000000107
The American Heart Association (AHA) in partnership with major public health organisations, has made major strides in tobacco use prevention and cessation, and the tobacco control efforts have cut in half the youth smoking rate from 1997 to 2007 and have saved >8 million lives in the past 50 years. Its statement reviews the latest science concerning the new class of tobacco products: electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes).It provides an overview on design, operations, constituents, toxicology, safety, user profiles, public health, youth access, impact as a cessation aid, and second-hand exposure. In particular, it is clear that:
The conclusion of the statement is that the AHA considers the e-cigarettes that contain nicotine to be tobacco products, but e-cigarettes, compared with cigarettes and smokeless tobacco, do not contain or have lower levels of several tobacco-derived harmful and potentially harmful constituents.Moreover, because e-cigarettes are relatively new products, their health effects have not been well studied; little is known about their use and their characteristics; their long-term health effects on individual users and the potential harm incurred by long-term use remains completely unknown; therefore extensive research is required to address these questions.
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