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Stanton Glantz from the University of California has meta-analysed these studies and found that smokers who vape are 30% less likely to quit smoking than smokers who don’t.Critics have pointed out that all these studies have lumped together daily users with less-than-daily users.This trial was vigorously pilloried by activist vapers because the e-cigarettes used were “first generation” cigalikes, widely disdained on vaping chat rooms as delivering feeble amounts of nicotine.This present study seems certain to be shrugged off with the very same arguments, as the most common e-cigarettes used by daily vapers were also cigalikes.But public health policy on e-cigarettes and smoking cessation should not be built on such anecdotes any more than the heartfelt convictions of many drivers who say they’re quite safe and incident-free after drinking should challenge the evidence-based data on the risks of alcohol on driving.* Editor’s note: the previous headline “Want to quit smoking?In the absence of substantial data about sustained smoking cessation from newer generation “mods” and “tank” systems, this present study provides a window on how most vapers are progressing.
These differences were not statistically significant. An early randomised controlled trial also found that e-cigarettes were as ineffective as nicotine replacement therapy in cessation at six months follow-up: 92.7% e-cigarette users still smoking compare with 94.2% using nicotine patches.This sounds reasonable until we look at the evidence from four cohort studies published since 2006 which reported on whether reducing smoking, as opposed to stopping smoking altogether, reduces the risk of early death.While there is strong evidence for a causal association between early uptake, amount smoked and duration of smoking, the evidence on “reverse engineering” harm by continuing to smoke while cutting back is far from strong.Of those vaping every day, only 13.9% reduced their smoking by at least half.So more than 86% of daily vapers are not making substantial reductions: they are vaping daily and often smoking as much as they always have.This last group would include those who have tried vaping only occasionally or out of curiosity and so they’d be far less likely to be vaping in an attempt to quit smoking.