E-Cigarette Reviews and Rankings

Peer-Reviewed Clinical Trial Finds No Adverse Health Effects from Long-Term Vaping

Regular use of electronic cigarettes over long periods of time has no adverse impact on health, according to the findings of a 24-month peer-reviewed clinical trial due to be published next month in the journal Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology.

Entitled “Evaluation of the Safety Profile of an Electronic Vapour Product Used for Two Years by Smokers in a Real-life Setting”, the study followed 209 volunteer smokers who agreed to use a closed system electronic cigarette over a period of two years, with researchers regularly monitoring their lung and heart functions, measuring their exposure to nicotine and various tobacco constituents, and keeping an eye out for any adverse effects on their overall health. Throughout the entire 24-month study, no serious health concerns were recorded among the participants, and no clinically-relevant adverse effects were observed by the researchers.

“This study shows that after two years of continual e-cigarette use, there were no signs of serious health complications in smokers.” said Tanvir Walele, Director of Scientific Affairs at Fontem Ventures. “Clinical data over a two-year period gives us a much clearer picture about longer term vaping, and the potential implications for the health of smokers, so they can make an informed decision.”

We’ll have to wait for the study to be published next month, but according to the abstract made public through a press release, the 209 healthy smokers involved in the research used the Puritane closed-system e-cigarette developed by Fontem Ventures. It’s not yet clear how often participants were asked to come in for follow-up visits, but every time they did, researchers monitored their vital signs and exposure to nicotine and selected tobacco constituents, conducted electrocardiograms and lung function tests, and questioned them about any nicotine withdrawal effects and their desire to smoke conventional cigarettes.

The most frequently reported adverse effects throughout the 2-year study were headache (28.7% of participants), nasopharyngitis (28.7%), sore throat (19.6%) and cough (16.7%), all of which dissipated over time. “Small decreases in lung function were not considered clinically relevant. No clinically relevant findings were observed in the other safety parameters,” researchers noted.

Furthermore, the use of electronic cigarettes was associated with reduced exposure to hazardous compounds found in cigarette smoke, as conventional cigarette consumption gradually decreased in all subjects. At the same time, urinary nicotine levels remained close to what they were at baseline, which shows that e-cigarettes were effective in delivering sufficient nicotine.

Researchers concluded that the use of electronic cigarettes was well tolerated by participants over the 24 months, and was not associated with any clinically relevant health concerns.

“Governments and policy-makers should ensure that regulatory frameworks reflect this emerging scientific consensus, as more long term research demonstrates the safety profile of e-cigarettes,” Tanvir Walele said. “This research suggests we need e-cigarette regulation that is not modelled on tobacco product regulation, but encourages innovation and compliance with robust product quality, manufacturing and safety standards.”

This is certainly great news for vapers, but I should point out that the study was carried out by Fontem Ventures, a subsidiary of Imperial Brands PLC, the world’s fourth largest tobacco cigarette company, so it is not an independent study. Luckily, its findings are backed up by another study into the long-term effects of vaping, which was published late last year. Italian researchers led by Professor Ricardo Polosa followed a group of daily e-cigarette users who had never smoked tobacco, over a period of 3.5 years, and found no relevant health concerns.

An updated Cochrane Review that analyzed several studies on the effects of electronic cigarettes also concluded that nicotine-containing electronic cigarettes can help smokers quit or reduce smoking, with no increased health risks associated with short- to mid-term (up to two years) use.

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