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Consumers unclear about the risks and benefits of vaping.

News image 3.7.15

According to the Reuter’s news agency, consumers are unsure when it comes to e-cigarettes.

Reporting on a very small study from Scotland, 64 smokers found little consensus about the potential harms or benefits to vaping.

The study, published in the journal Tobacco Control involved 12 focus groups and 11 individual interviews. All participants were smokers. Their understanding of NRT and its role was clear, but as Reuters reported, “ With e-cigarettes, however, people were less clear about what their intended purpose or correct use might be, though they were seen as less directly tied to smoking cessation than patches or gum.

Reuters reported: “Some people saw e-cigarettes as a more satisfying replacement to smoking, while others viewed them as less desirable or even as a threat to smoking cessation.

“This paper shows that the public’s view of e-cigarettes is far from being clear, with a great deal of ambiguity around the product and its intended use,” said Dr. Ricardo Polosa, a professor of internal medicine at the University of Catania in Italy.

“Really, it’s not complicated at all,” Polosa, who wasn’t involved in the study, said by email. “E-cigs are a much safer alternative to smoking.”

While this study is too small to draw many conclusions about public perception of e-cigarettes, the damage caused by sensationalist and misleading reporting on e-cigarettes by the main stream media is now widely recognized by many in Public Health, was a topic debated widely at the recent Global Forum on Nicotine, and is reflected in this small survey.

3rd July 2015, 11:55