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Just recently, Health Undersecretary Eric Domingo reiterated the health department’s warning that the use of electronic cigarettes is not a good alternative to cigarette smoking and that because e-cigarettes or “vapes” contain nicotine, the DOH is concerned that vapers will get addicted to nicotine and then become cigarette smokers.

Dr. Domingo’s statement is hardly surprising. The DOH follows the World Health Organization (WHO) position that the only way to reduce smoking is for smokers to quit or die, [...]

 

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Doctors across the country have joined hands to push the government to ban Electronic Nicotine Delivery Devices (ENDS) in India. As many as 1,061 doctors from across the country have written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging him to stop ENDS in India before they become an epidemic.

The doctors in their letter stated that ENDS such as e-cigarettes, vaping devices, e-sheesha, e-nicotine-flavoured hookah, and heat-not-burn devices are being promoted as safer alternatives to smoking, and have expressed concern about the increasing interest of the youth in ENDS.

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Tobacco giant Reynolds wants to give smokers a more convenient way to use nicotine.

On Wednesday, the company rolled out nicotine lozenges that dissolve in the mouth and come in four flavors: berry, cream, and two kinds of mint. Sold under the brand Revel, the lozenges are the first new product the company has launched on a wide commercial scale since the Vuse e-cigarette in 2013. Its new Revel lozenges are meant to appeal exclusively to adults who already smoke. [...]

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The March 19 announcement by San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera of steps to ban the sale of all e-cigarettes in the city is the logical culmination of an unrelenting nationwide campaign—one that hypes a so-called “epidemic” of teen vaping while ignoring the saved lives of adults who stop smoking combustible cigarettes and of teens who never start.

The press release uses classic drug-panic hyperbole: “San Francisco has never been afraid to lead and we’re certainly not afraid to do so when the health and lives of our children are at stake.”

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A former health ministry official and a think-tank have called on Putrajaya to treat heat-not-burn (HNB) smoking refills as cigarettes and subject to the same regulations which govern tobacco products, amid reports that Putrajaya is developing a law on e-cigarettes, which include HNB products.

Speaking to FMT, the Malaysian Women’s Action for Tobacco Control and Health (MyWATCH) said HNB refills fulfilled the definition of a cigarette under the Control of Tobacco Product Regulations 2004 (CTPR), [...]

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“The tobacco industry floods countries with an addictive and lethal product, cigarettes, which kill over seven million people per year,” said Laurent Huber, director of the US Action on Smoking & Health (ASH) organisation.

“For this reason, the global health community and some human rights agencies recognise that the tobacco industry violates the rights to life and health and undermines many other rights including children’s rights and women rights,” he added.

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Earlier this month, San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera and Supervisor Shamann Walton announced that they are introducing an ordinance to the Board of Supervisors that would ban all electronic cigarettes until they are officially reviewed and approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Since there is not a single e-cigarette on the market that has undergone such an approval process, the ordinance does indeed ban the sale of all electronic cigarettes in the city of San Francisco.

 

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There is an increased presence of e-cigarette companies on social media – most notably, by JUUL. This has led to some researchers to suggest that higher youth vaping rates are, at least in part, attributable to social media branding and marketing. [...] E-cigarettes are all over social media. A study conducted in 2013 found that almost 30,000 videos showing people vaping were available on YouTube, and more than 100 million views were reported.

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A study recently published in BMC public health, looked at self-reported adverse effects (AEs) and perceived health changes due to e-cigarette use amongst Hungarian adult e-cigarette-only users (former smokers who switched completely to e-cigarette use) and dual users (smokers who use e-cigarettes and combustible tobacco cigarettes concomitantly). The study titled Perceived health effects of vaping among Hungarian adult e-cigarette-only and dual users: a cross-sectional internet survey, administered a web-based survey to 1042 adults in 2015. [...]

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Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar and departing Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Scott Gottlieb penned an op-ed in The Washington Post on Wednesday warning of a regulatory crackdown on the e-cigarette industry if teen use doesn't decline. “The e-cigarette craze among teenagers has become an epidemic," the two wrote in the joint op-ed.

"We agree with those who believe that e-cigarettes may offer a lower-risk alternative for adult smokers who still want access to nicotine. [...]

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Cigarette smoking is huge both from an economic standpoint and globally. It’s equivalent of about $850 billion a year. There are about 1.1 to 1.3 billion cigarette users worldwide. We also have other products like bidis in India and Kretek in Indonesia. We have lots of oral tobacco products in addition to that. But, we are seeing a disruption in the marketplace as new products are coming in. They can replace the lethal products. [...]

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The “epidemic” of youth e-cigarette use has not “erased” progress in reducing youth tobacco consumption. The gains in reducing youth smoking prevalence are very real and will translate into millions of lives saved down the road. The problem of vaping has nothing to do with tobacco use because e-liquids do not contain any tobacco. Youth who vape are not tobacco users. They are vapers. So youth e-cigarette use has not undermined gains in reducing smoking. [...]

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The science looking at potential harmful effects of e-cigarettes is lagging, as e-cigarette popularity soars and consumer marketing takes hold convincing consumers that e-cigarettes are the safer of the two.

The scenario presents surgeons with the clinical challenge of trying to determine how e-cigarette use compares to smoking regular cigarettes in terms of wound healing, according to a commentary [...]

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Considering the ceaseless media coverage and the constant threat of retribution by regulators and anti-vaping non-profit health groups, one would think there exists a large body of scientific evidence to back up the claim that youth vaping has become a public health crisis; but apparently, there is not.
Or, if the evidence exists, it’s not been made available to the public, the industry or to other researchers who specialize in tobacco harm reduction. Why not?

Find out in this extended RegWatch interview with Dr. Brad Rodu [...]

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Researchers have found that smoking can reduce the impact of some UC symptoms.

The results of a 10-year study from 1998 suggest that people who both smoke and have UC are less likely than people who do not smoke to require steroids to treat a relapse. They were also less likely to require surgery or develop serious complications.

Scientists are not why sure smoking has an impact on UC, but it is possible that there is a connection to the effect it has on the immune system.

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The e-cigarette industry has taken the community by storm as an alternative for smokers trying to quit the habit.

But manufacturers and vendors are up in arms over strict laws they say are costing local businesses and are pushing for nicotine vaping.

Jay Karanouh owns the Sydney store House of Vape and says for every year they don’t sell nicotine in their vape liquid, they and other businesses lose hundreds of thousands of dollars.

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An apparent surge in vaping among Nebraska teenagers is prompting a new push from lawmakers to raise the state’s age limit on e-cigarettes from 18 to 21 and ban their use in bars, restaurants and workplaces.

School officials say the crackdown would help them fight the growing use of e-cigarettes among students, who can easily hide them. “It’s a problem for every school,” said Lisa Albers, a Grand Island Public Schools board member who is pushing for the bill. “Nobody really knew about this (until recently). It was flying under the radar.”

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Quezon City Mayor Herbert Bautista on Wednesday approved an ordinance regulating the use of e-cigarettes in public spaces, including public conveyances, advertisements and promotions of e-cigarettes.

City Ordinance 2737-2018 aims to fully protect the health and welfare of the residents of Quezon City and at the same time safeguard the interests of all stakeholders, including smokers who have the right to choose less harmful alternatives to cigarettes.

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In an almost uniform response to the impending exit of Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, city and county public health officials are urging the Trump administration to go bigger in its response to adolescents' growing use of e-cigarettes. The issue, they say, is reaching crisis levels and many worry the FDA's much-touted efforts are falling short.

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Taxpayers will pay more than $2 million for nicotine substitutes for South Australian prisoners over the next four years, as the state moves to make its jails smoke-free. The nicotine patches and lozenges form part of the $6.2 million cost to taxpayers of keeping cigarettes out of the state's prisons in the years to 2022, with additional funding set aside for health and security measures, staff costs and quit support.