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Smoking vs e-cigarettes and the increasing use of e-cigarettes

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Sanjay Agrawal, MBBS of University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, UK discusses e-cigarettes compared to smoking. 85% of lung cancer patients are smokers. Crucially, a third of patients in clinic are still smokers. Referral to stop smoking services, the use of tablets, patches, or behavioral support often fail with these patients. However, many do vaping and e-cigarettes as a way to stop smoking instead. In England, the rate of smoking has reduced in recent years and the use of e-cigarettes has increased. E-cigarettes are not entirely harmless but much safer than smoking tobacco. Cochrane analysis looking at e-cigarettes found the rate of quitting is greater in nicotine and e-cigarettes than placebo. There are no licensed e-cigarettes in the UK, so prescription is not possible currently. Furthermore, as the products are evolving research cannot keep up with assessing health impacts. There is currently short-term but no long-term data on e-cigarette health impacts. The short-term side effects of nicotine and e-cigarettes are equivalent. Recorded at the 2016 World Conference of Lung Cancer (WCLC) of the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) in Vienna, Austria.

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