Monday August 19, 2019

E-cigarettes responsible for a decline in Cigarette Smoking among the Youth

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FILE - A smoker exhales vapor from an e-cigarette at the Vapor Spot, in Sacramento, California, in this July 7, 2015, photo. VOA

New York, Jan 23, 2017: E-cigarettes — seen as responsible for a decline in cigarette smoking among the youth — are actually attracting a new population of adolescents who might not otherwise have smoked tobacco products, researchers warned.

The findings showed that the e-cigarettes attract low-risk adolescents who may not have used nicotine at all if e-cigarettes did not exist.

“E-cigarettes are encouraging — not discouraging — youth to smoke and to consume nicotine and are expanding the tobacco market,” said Stanton A. Glantz, Professor at University of California – San Francisco.

Several previous studies have reported that adolescents who start with e-cigarettes are more likely to subsequently smoke traditional cigarettes.

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According to researchers, they did not find any evidence that e-cigarettes have caused youth smoking to decline. In fact, combined e-cigarette and cigarette use among adolescents in 2014 was higher than total cigarette use in 2009, they stated.

“The study didn’t find any evidence that e-cigarettes are causing youth smoking to decline,” added Lauren Dutra, social scientist at RTI International — a not-for-profit research organisation based in North Carolina, US.

The “recent declines in youth smoking are likely due to tobacco control efforts, not to e-cigarettes,” Dutra noted.

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For the new study, the team examined survey data from more than 140,000 middle and high school students who completed the CDC’s National Youth Tobacco Survey between 2004 and 2014.

The results showed that cigarette smoking among US adolescents declined during that decade, but did not decline faster after the advent of e-cigarettes in the US between 2007 and 2009.

The study was published online in the journal Pediatrics. (IANS)

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Vaping Industry Group Sues U.S. Government to Delay Upcoming Review of Thousands of E-Cigarettes on Market

The legal challenge by the Vapor Technology Association is the latest hurdle in the Food and Drug Administration's yearslong effort

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Vaping, US, E-Cigarettes
FILE - A patron exhales vapor from an e-cigarette at the Henley Vaporium in New York VOA

A vaping industry group sued the U.S. government on Wednesday to delay an upcoming review of thousands of e-cigarettes on the market.

The legal challenge by the Vapor Technology Association is the latest hurdle in the Food and Drug Administration’s yearslong effort to regulate the multibillion-dollar vaping industry, which includes makers and retailers of e-cigarette devices and flavored solutions.

The vaping group argued that the latest deadline of next May to submit products for review could wipe out many of the smaller companies. The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in Kentucky.

E-cigarettes first appeared in the U.S. more than a decade ago and have grown in popularity despite little research on their long-term effects, including whether they can help smokers quit cigarettes.

Vaping, US, E-Cigarettes
FILE – A cashier displays a packet of tobacco-flavored Juul pods at a store in San Francisco, June 17, 2019. VOA

In recent years, health authorities have warned of an epidemic of vaping by underage teenagers, particularly the leading brand Juul, known for its high nicotine content and easy-to-conceal device, which resembles a flash drive.

Nicotine is what makes both cigarettes and e-cigarettes addictive, and health experts say the chemical is harmful to developing brains.

San Francisco-based Juul is among 800 member companies of the vaping association.

Moving deadlines

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The 2009 law that gave the FDA power over the traditional tobacco products did not mention e-cigarettes. And it wasn’t until 2016 that the agency expanded its own regulations to include the devices. But since then FDA regulators have repeatedly pushed back the timeline, at one point until 2022, to begin reviewing the legions of vaping products that have come to market.

Frustrated by the delays, anti-tobacco groups including the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids sued the FDA to speed up the process. In June, a federal judge sided with the groups and set a deadline of next May for all companies to submit their products for federal review. The FDA did not appeal the decision.

The vapor group’s lawsuit said the FDA has now set five different deadlines.

“It is time for FDA to stop moving the goalposts and changing the rules in the middle of the game to the detriment of our manufacturers and small businesses,” said Tony Abboud, the group’s executive director, in a statement.

Vaping, US, E-Cigarettes
A vaping industry group sued the U.S. government on Wednesday to delay an upcoming review of thousands of e-cigarettes on the market. VOA

Vaping executives have long said that most companies will not be able to afford to conduct large, expensive studies needed for FDA review. Only products that meet FDA standards would be permitted to be sold.

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The FDA declined to comment on the lawsuit. (VOA)