Patterns of electronic cigarette use and user beliefs about their safety and benefits: An Internet survey.
ABSTRACT INTRODUCTION AND AIMS: As the popularity of electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) increases, it is becoming important to find out more about the characteristics of e-cigarette users, why and how they use the product and whether e-cigarettes are used exclusively or in combination with conventional cigarettes. The objective of this study was to investigate patterns and effects of e-cigarette use and user beliefs about e-cigarette safety and benefits. DESIGN AND METHODS: E-cigarette users in Poland were recruited online and asked to participate in a web-based survey. The participants provided information on their smoking history, patterns of e-cigarette use, beliefs and attitudes regarding the product and information on concurrent use of conventional cigarettes. RESULTS: The survey was completed by 179 e-cigarette users. Almost all participants used e-cigarettes daily. E-cigarettes were primarily used to quit smoking or to reduce the harm associated with smoking (both 41%), and were successful in helping the surveyed users to achieve these goals with 66% not smoking conventional cigarettes at all and 25% smoking under five cigarettes a day. Most participants (82%) did not think that e-cigarettes were completely safe, but thought that they were less dangerous than conventional cigarettes. Sixty percent believed that e-cigarettes were addictive, but less so than conventional cigarettes. DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSIONS: The participants primarily used e-cigarettes as a stop-smoking aid or as an alternative to conventional cigarettes, and the majority reported that they successfully stopped smoking. More data on e-cigarette safety and its efficacy in harm-reduction and smoking cessation are needed.
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ABSTRACT: A drug doesn't necessarily have the same dependence potential independent of vehicle, not even if the dose is fixed. Examples where the effects of the drugs differ among vehicles are coca tea, coca leaf chewing, intra-venous cocaine and smoking crack cocaine. Another example is with THC from marijuana and haschis. The dependence potential to drugs and nicotine (nic) also seems to depend on the administration form. It has been suggested that that dependence may vary to different nic containing products 1 . In order to exam-ine the dependence of different tobacco/nic products difficulty quitting was used as a criterion for depen-dence. The Cochrane system for estimating cessation success of different product categories was used. In the Cochrane system 2 , only methodologically sound studies are accepted and the follow-up period must be at least 6 months. It was decided to use the large body of well-conducted studies with pharmaceutical prod-ucts since they are relatively similar in design across studies and product categories. The intention was not to estimate the effect of the treatment but rather its placebo to determine how difficult it is to stop using a certain form of tobacco/nicotine product. Therefore, the success rate in the placebo group was used as indi-cators for difficulty abstaining. It was found that that cigarette smokers, independent of treatment, showed a mean success rate of roughly 10% with little variation (range 9%-11%). Those seeking to stop smokeless tobacco use had roughly more than double the success rate of cigarette smokers (range 19%-33%). In a study, where 69 long-term (mean 7 years) users of nicotine gum a success rate of 36% was observed 3 . Another interesting observation is that varenicline´s effect seem to vary between tobacco/nic containing products. While the long term, one year, efficacy is solid when used by smokers stopping with cigarettes the efficacy is less solid for smokeless tobacco and long term use of nic chewing gum. In the 3 studies where varenicline has been used for smokeless tobacco ces-sation in only one of the studies was there a statistical significance difference seen at 6 months 4 . In the other two studies strong trends but not significant were observed at the end of the treatment 5,6 . One might think that varenicline should have the best efficacy with a product where there is a more pure dependence to nic not involving other drug substances and the rich social, behavioural and sensorimotor stimulation that goes with cigarette smoking. These are factors that a partial nicotine receptor agonist such as varenicline cannot influence. To the contrary it seems that the efficacy of varenicline is more related to the absolute strength of the dependence with the best efficacy with cigarette smoking, less with smokeless tobacco maybe the least efficacy with long term use of nic gum. There is also some emerging data on the dependence to electronic cigarettes in comparison with traditional cigarettes. Electronic cigarette use has generally been associated with less dependence than that to tradition-al cigarettes 7-9 . It has been suggested that degree ofPreevencion del Tabaquismo. 01/2014;
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ABSTRACT: In recent years, electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) have generated considerable interest and debate on the implications for tobacco control and public health. Although the rapid growth of e-cigarettes is global, at present, little is known about awareness and use. This paper presents self-reported awareness, trial and current use of e-cigarettes in 10 countries surveyed between 2009 and 2013; for six of these countries, we present the first data on e-cigarettes from probability samples of adult smokers. A cross-sectional analysis of probability samples of adult (≥ 18 years) current and former smokers participating in the International Tobacco Control (ITC) surveys from 10 countries. Surveys were administered either via phone, face-to-face interviews, or the web. Survey questions included sociodemographic and smoking-related variables, and questions about e-cigarette awareness, trial and current use. There was considerable cross-country variation by year of data collection and for awareness of e-cigarettes (Netherlands (2013: 88%), Republic of Korea (2010: 79%), United States (2010: 73%), Australia (2013: 66%), Malaysia (2011: 62%), United Kingdom (2010: 54%), Canada (2010: 40%), Brazil (2013: 35%), Mexico (2012: 34%), and China (2009: 31%)), in self-reports of ever having tried e-cigarettes (Australia, (20%), Malaysia (19%), Netherlands (18%), United States (15%), Republic of Korea (11%), United Kingdom (10%), Mexico (4%), Canada (4%), Brazil (3%), and China (2%)), and in current use (Malaysia (14%), Republic of Korea (7%), Australia (7%), United States (6%), United Kingdom (4%), Netherlands (3%), Canada (1%), and China (0.05%)). The cross-country variability in awareness, trial, and current use of e-cigarettes is likely due to a confluence of country-specific market factors, tobacco control policies and regulations (e.g., the legal status of e-cigarettes and nicotine), and the survey timing along the trajectory of e-cigarette awareness and trial/use in each country. These ITC results constitute an important snapshot of an early stage of what appears to be a rapid progression of global e-cigarette use.International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 11/2014; 11(11):11691-704. · 1.99 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: E-cigarettes are sold at many different types of retail establishments. A new type of shop has emerged, the vape shop, which specializes in sales of varied types of e-cigarettes. Vape shops allow users to sample several types. There are no empirical research articles on vape shops. Information is needed on consumers' beliefs and behaviors about these shops, the range of products sold, marketing practices, and variation in shop characteristics by ethnic community and potential counter-marketing messages. This study is the first to investigate marketing characteristics of vape shops located in different ethnic neighborhoods in Los Angeles, by conducting a Yelp electronic search and content analysis of consumer reports on vape shops they have visited. The primary measure was Yelp reviews (N = 103 vape shops in the Los Angeles, California area), which were retrieved and content coded. We compared the attributes of vape shops representing four ethnic communities: African American, Hispanic/Latino, Korean, and White. Vape shop attributes listed as most important were the selection of flavors or hardware (95%), fair prices (92%), and unique flavors or hardware (89%). Important staff marketing attributes included being friendly (99%), helpful/patient/respectful (97%), and knowledgeable/professional (95%). Over one-half of the shops were rated as clean (52%) and relaxed (61%). Relatively few of the reviews mentioned quitting smoking (32%) or safety of e-cigarettes (15%). The selection of flavors and hardware appeared relatively important in Korean ethnic location vape shops. Yelp reviews may influence potential consumers. As such, the present study's focus on Yelp reviews addressed at least eight of the FDA's Center for Tobacco Products' priorities pertaining to marketing influences on consumer beliefs and behaviors. The findings suggest that there were several vape shop and product attributes that consumers considered important to disseminate to others through postings on Yelp. Lack of health warnings about these products may misrepresent their potential risk. The main influence variables were product variety and price. There was only a little evidence of influence of ethnic neighborhood; for example, regarding importance of flavors and hardware. Shop observational studies are recommended to discern safety factors across different ethnic neighborhoods.Tobacco Induced Diseases 01/2014; 12(1):22.