Electronic cigarettes just blowing smoke?

A new study has determined that the use of electronic cigarettes does not correlate to smoking cessation. In the longitudinal study, researchers analyzed data from 949 American smokers and concluded that e-cigarette users were not more likely to quit or reduce smoking, when compared to non-users.

E-cigarettes have been widely promoted as effective tools for helping smokers quit cigarettes. The results of this study bring to question the authenticity of those claims. Moreover, concerns are being raised about the effects on health of the constituents of e-cigarettes.

Regardless, new tools designed to enable smoking cessation are needed.  More and more research is elucidating the dangers of cigarette smoke to bystanders. Work by Bo Hang and group at University of California reveals that third hand smoke, residual smoke that gets absorbed by walls and furniture in a house, can be extremely dangerous. Third hand smoke can react with indoor air pollutants such as ozone and nitrous acid and produce carcinogenic compounds, which bind to DNA and lead to cancer. Moreover, according to a study published in Lancet, banning cigarettes in public places is associated with a reduction in premature births and childhood asthma in the US and in Europe. Thus, second-hand smoke is detrimental to the health of pregnant women, newborn babies and children.

Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of cancer in the United States, and accounts for 30% of all cancer deaths. According to the Center for Disease Control, about 1 in 5 of all adults in the country is a smoker. With such an epidemic at hand, a range of arsenal must be employed to smoke out cigarettes.