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posted by mrcoolbp on Tuesday March 25 2014, @08:01PM   Printer-friendly
from the quitting-is-for-quitters dept.

GungnirSniper writes:

A small study done by The Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education at The University of California, San Francisco, "suggests that e-cigarettes don't actually help people to quit smoking." However, of the 949 smokers in the study, only 88 used e-cigarettes, causing the study's researchers to "admit that their findings should be viewed with some caution."

World Science reports "They also found that e-cigarette use was more commmon among women, younger adults and people with less education." Last year, the US Centers for Disease Control reported e-cigarette use more than doubled among U.S. middle and high school students from 2011-2012. The lack of solid research, potential youth market, and abundance of caution have had anti-tobacco activists and researchers pushing for a ban on advertising of e-cigarettes.

NPR has a recently story about "vaping" (using e-cigarettes) indoors and in the workplace.

If you smoke, have you been able to cut back your smoking or quit thanks to electronic cigarettes? If you do not smoke, does it bother you that others use e-cigarettes indoors?

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  • (Score: 2) by tangomargarine on Wednesday March 26 2014, @05:46PM

    by tangomargarine (667) on Wednesday March 26 2014, @05:46PM (#21618)

    I was just pointing out how the study in the article in question was full of crap in a different story, but I guess I'll do it again here...

    From on-t-aid-quitting-study-says-1.14918 [] comment section:

    The Rest of the Story I'm sad to say that this is complete garbage. It is truly an example of bogus, or junk science. Why? Because the study does not examine the rate of successful smoking cessation among electronic cigarette users who want to quit smoking or cut down substantially on the amount that they smoke and who are using e-cigarettes in an attempt to accomplish this. Instead, the study examines the percentage of quitting among allsmokers who have ever tried electronic cigarettes - for any reason - in the past month. A large proportion of the 88 smokers who had tried an e-cigarette may have simply been trying these products to see what they are like. It is plausible, in fact probable, that many of these 88 smokers were not actually interested in quitting or trying to quit with electronic cigarettes. These products have become very popular and have gained widespread media attention and it is entirely possible that many of these smokers simply wanted to see what the big fuss is all about. It is easy to see how this fatal flaw in the research destroys the validity of the authors' conclusion. But that isn't the end of the story. If this were simply a bogus conclusion, then we could simply evaluate the article as being junk science, dismiss it as bogus, and leave it there. But unfortunately, it doesn't end there. Why? Because it is quite apparent from the study itself that the authors knew that the overwhelming majority of the 88 electronic cigarettes "users" in their study had little or no interest in quitting and were not using these products as part of a quit attempt. How do we know this? Because the authors tell us! In the Table, the authors report that of the 88 e-cigarette "users," only 8.0% reported that they were trying to quit at that time (that is, within the next 30 days). And only 39.8% of the e-cigarette users had any intention of quitting in the next six months. This means that we actually know for a fact that the majority of e-cigarette users in this study were not using these products as part of a quit attempt. What this indicates is that this is not simply junk science. Rather, it is a deliberate attempt on the part of the investigators to misuse data. They are using these data to draw a conclusion about whether electronic cigarettes are effective in helping smokers quit, yet they are knowingly drawing upon data from smokers who are using e-cigarettes for other reasons, who may have simply tried an electronic cigarette once, and who most definitely were not using these products as part of a current quit attempt. In other words, 92% of the e-cigarette users in the study were not trying to quit. We know for a fact that 92% of the e-cigarette users were not making a quit attempt. And yet the study authors interpret the data as if these smokers were trying to quit using e-cigarettes, but failed! This is dishonesty in research. Unfortunately, it does not appear that these investigators are truly interested in whether e-cigarettes help many smokers quit or not. Instead, I believe that these researchers have a pre-determined conclusion that e-cigarettes are ineffective and that they are trying to manufacture results that support their pre-determined conclusion. It would be a tragedy if policy makers use the conclusions of this "study" to draw conclusions about the effectiveness of electronic cigarettes for smoking cessation purposes. By Dr. Michael Siegel, Professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences, Boston University School of Public Health.

    "Is that really true?" "I just spent the last hour telling you to think for yourself! Didn't you hear anything I said?"
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  • (Score: 2) by sjames on Thursday March 27 2014, @03:03AM

    by sjames (2882) on Thursday March 27 2014, @03:03AM (#21889) Journal

    The thing that's even more amazing is that I have never seen a single e-cig vendor claim that e-cigs were intended to help in quitting nicotine. So they cheated to 'debunk' a non-myth that nobody actually held much of an opinion on in the first place. Even the inventor never said it would help you quit nicotine. It has always been explicitly about being able to continue using nicotine without the harm of smoking. It's the makers of the patches, gum, and inhaler that are making the wild claims.

    I've seen a surprising array of organizations using similar tactics for inexplicable reasons, including the American Lung Association. The latter in spite of the very large number of people (some with medical tests to back it up) reporting breathing easier after switching.

    Then to top it off, all the anti crowd conflating smoking with non-smoking nicotine use. It's actually hard to find studies that examine the risks of just nicotine. Many many others claim to be about nicotine but are actually about smoking.

    Just to make it clear to everyone. I quit smoking years ago. I still use nicotine and have no intention of stopping at this time.

    I do notice that while craving still happens if I don't vape for a while, it's urgency is much less than when I smoked. I have no idea if that would continue if I decided to quit or not.