The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog is intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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    E-cigs from a public health perspective

    Electronic cigarettes (e-cigs) have experienced rapid growth in popularity, but little is known about how they are used.

    Researchers at the Pennsylvania State University, College of Medicine, in Hershey, surveyed the pattern of e-cig use and their impact on tobacco use.

    First, the details.

    • 104 experienced e-cig users were interviewed.

    And, the results.

    • 78% of e-cig users hadn’t used any tobacco in the prior 30 days.
      • Previously, they smoked an average of 25 cigarettes per day.
      • They tried to quit smoking an average of 9 times before starting e-cigs.
    • Two-thirds had tried to quit smoking using an FDA-approved smoking cessation medication.
    • Most had used e-cigs daily for at least a year.
    • Three quarters started using e-cigs in order to quit smoking.
      • Almost all felt that the e-cig helped them succeed in quitting smoking.
    • Two-thirds used e-cig liquid with a medium to high concentration of nicotine (13 mg +).
    • Only 8% were using the most widely sold types of cigarette-sized e-cigs that are typically powered by a single 3.7-volt battery.
    • Instead most used e-cigs designed to enable the atomizer to more consistently achieve a hotter more intense vapor.

    The bottom line?

    The authors concluded that the medical community needs more data before recommending e-cig.

    “However, for those who have successfully switched to e-cigs, the priority should be staying off cigarettes, rather than quitting e-cigs.”

    In other words, it’s preferable to be hooked on e-cigs than cigarettes.

    11/21/11 21:32 JR

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