Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Vaping beats patches and gum for quitting smoking



Vaping beats patches and gum for quitting smoking

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Containers of juice for E-cigarettes are displayed at Gone With the Smoke Vapor Lounge in San Francisco. afp

Vaping beats patches and gum for quitting smoking

E-cigarettes are twice as effective as nicotine patches or gum at helping people quit smoking traditional cigarettes, according to major British study Wednesday, involving nearly 900 people.

The report in the New England Journal of Medicine found that 18 per cent of smokers who switched to battery powered vaping devices were able to steer clear of combustible cigarettes for one year, compared to 9.9 per cent of people who relied on nicotine replacement therapies to quit.

“This is the first trial to test the efficacy of modern e-cigarettes in helping smokers quit,” said lead researcher Peter Hajek, a professor at Queen Mary University of London.

“E-cigarettes were almost twice as effective as the ‘gold standard’ combination of nicotine replacement products.”

More likely to keep vaping

However, people who switched to vaping were far more likely to keep vaping, indicating they may have exchanged one nicotine delivery device for another, without ever beating their addiction.

The trial randomly assigned 886 people who sought help to quit smoking in Britain to receive either a three-month supply of a nicotine replacement treatment of their choice - such as patches, gum, lozenges, sprays, inhalators, or a combination – or an e-cigarette starter pack with one or two bottles of nicotine-containing liquid.

The vaping group was encouraged to buy future supplies in their own choice of nicotine strengths and flavors, which include fruit, candy and mint.

Counseling and behavioral support were offered once a week for at least a month.

When researchers checked back after a year, they found that 80 per cent of e-cigarette users who had managed to steer clear of combustible cigarettes were still vaping regularly.

Just nine per cent of those who had quit cigarettes for a year in the nicotine replacement group were still using patches, gum or other substitutes.

For that reason, an accompanying editorial in the New England Journal of Medicine urged caution.

“While e-cigarettes are ‘safer’ than traditional cigarettes, they are not without risks,” wrote Belinda Borrelli, professor of health policy at Boston University Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine, and George O’Connor, professor of medicine at Boston University School of Medicine.

The ongoing vaping habit among those in the e-cigarette arm of the study “raises concerns about the health consequences of long-term e-cigarette use”, they added, noting that “e-cigarette vapor contains many toxins” though the levels and their effects are generally considered to be lower than those coming from cigarette smoke.

‘Landmark’ results

Another concern is vaping’s popularity with youths, as America grapples with a 78 per cent surge in e-cigarette use among high school students from 2017-2018, which the US Surgeon General has described as an “epidemic.”

“Adult use may not only expose children to e-cigarette vapor but also models addictive behavior,” and boosts the risk that kids will take up combustible cigarettes themselves one day, the editorial said.

In the US and Britain, cigarette smoking is the leading preventable cause of death, taking some 480,000 lives each year in the US and more than 100,000 in Britain.

British experts said the findings could change the way health care providers talk about e-cigarettes, possibly leading more of them to encourage smokers to try vaping as a way to wean themselves off traditional cigarettes.

“The UK specialist stop smoking services will now be more likely to include e-cigarettes among their treatment options, and health professionals will feel more comfortable in recommending e-cigarettes as a stop-smoking intervention,” said study author Dunja Przulj from Queen Mary University of London.

“This may ultimately further accelerate the reduction in smoking and in smoking related diseases.”

According to Martin Dockrell, tobacco control lead at Public Health England, “this landmark research shows that switching to an e-cigarette can be one of the most effective ways to quit smoking, especially when combined with face-to-face support.”

MOST VIEWED

  • First Cambodian woman graduates from Japan’s NDA military academy

    A few years ago, Meach Sithyka Jessica became the first-ever Cambodian woman to graduate from the US Military Academy at West Point, and since then her courage and determination has served as an inspiration for other Cambodian women. Similarly, Ly Chansocheata became the first Cambodian

  • Construction begins on $1.5B Kampot seaport

    The International Multi-Purpose Logistics and Port Centre, principally invested by Kampot Logistics and Port Co Ltd and projected to cost $1.5 billion, has officially broken ground in Bokor town, Kampot province. The multi-purpose logistics and port centre, located in Prek Tnaot commune, will be built on

  • Cambodia eyes key role in electronics, auto hubs in SEA

    Two roadmaps, part of the LDC’s economic diversification plan, were designed to see it through its migration process, but experts say the journey might be arduous, particularly in the presence of two established hubs in the region By 2028, Cambodia hopes to have exited the

  • Hun Neng, lawmaker and PM’s brother, passes away aged 72

    Hun Neng, chairman of the 4th Commission of the National Assembly, has passed away from heart disease at the age of 72 on the afternoon of May 5, according to the Ministry of Information. Hun Neng is the older brother of Prime Minister Hun Sen, and was

  • PM meets with US business giants

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has met with a number of major US companies who have expressed interest in investing in Cambodia, in a meeting convened by the US-ASEAN Business Council (US-ABC). A delegation of companies – including Amazon, Meta, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, Ford, Visa and Pernod

  • CCC team off on US business trip

    The Kingdom’s leading economists and private sector representatives have called on the US to renew its tax preferential status for Cambodian exports, as a Cambodia Chamber of Commerce (CCC) delegation departed for a weeklong business visit to the US, where they will meet with