Experts warn that e-cigarettes can damage the lungs

Posted By News On September 2, 2012 - 9:00am

Vienna, Austria: New research has shown that despite electronic cigarettes being marketed as a potentially safer alternative to normal cigarettes, they are still causing harm to the lungs.

A new study, presented today (Sunday 2 September 2012) at the European Respiratory Society's Annual Congress in Vienna, has added new evidence to the debate over the safety of alternative nicotine-delivery products.

Electronic cigarettes are devices that deliver nicotine through a vapour, rather than smoke. There is no combustion involved but the nicotine in the device is still derived from tobacco. There has been much debate over the safety and efficiency of the products, but little scientific evidence to support either claim.

Researchers from the University of Athens in Greece aimed to investigate the short-term effects of using e-cigarettes on different people, including people without any known health problems and smokers with and without existing lung conditions.

The study included 8 people who had never smoked and 24 smokers, 11 with normal lung function and 13 people with either chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or asthma.

Each person used an electronic cigarette for 10 minutes. The researchers then measured their airway resistance using a number of tests, including a spirometry test.

The results showed that for all people included in the study, the e-cigarette caused an immediate increase in airway resistance, lasting for 10 minutes. In healthy subjects (never smokers) there was a statistically significant increase in airway resistance from a mean average of 182% to 206%.

In smokers with normal spirometry there was a statistically significant increase from a mean average of 176% to 220%. In COPD and asthma patients the use of one e-cigarette seemed to have no immediate effect to airway resistance.

Professor Christina Gratziou, one of the authors and Chair of the ERS Tobacco Control Committee, said: "We do not yet know whether unapproved nicotine delivery products, such as e-cigarettes, are safer than normal cigarettes, despite marketing claims that they are less harmful. This research helps us to understand how these products could be potentially harmful.

"We found an immediate rise in airway resistance in our group of participants, which suggests e-cigarettes can cause immediate harm after smoking the device. More research is needed to understand whether this harm also has lasting effects in the long-term.

"The ERS recommends following effective smoking cessation treatment guidelines based on clinical evidence which do not advocate the use of such products."

The thing to remember is that electronic cigarettes are not marketed at everyone, they are marketed at tobacco smokers in particular, therefore any statement about their safety must be in comparison with cigarette smoke.

One thing that we do know is that the vapour from an electronic cigarette does not contain Carbon Monoxide or Tar, for example.

Anyone who impartially compares e-cig vapour with cigarette smoke can only conclude that the vapour must be several orders of magnitude less harfull than smoke. A signicant improvement for a smoker who cannot quit.

This is known as Tobacco Harm Reduction, and has the potential to massively improve the health of a smoking population.


It's *TAR by the way, saying Tar can be messleading

Chistina Gratiziou earlier completed a study of the effectiveness of Chantix as a quitting aid. That study was funded by Pfizer, the makers of Chantix. "G and PAP declare that they have no financial competing interests. KG declares a financial competing interest from the research committee of the University of Thessaly. GS, MM and RS declare financial competing interests as employees of and stock holders of Pfizer, the study sponsor. No authors declare a non-financial competing interest."
Chantix has been given a black box warning and is held responsible for thousands of suicide, suicide ideation, and other extremely frightening side effects; yet that study concludes that Chantix is a great way to quit smoking. Conversely, this same scientist with financial ties to Pfizer, concludes that electronic cigarettes are NOT a safe way to quit smoking. Since there have been no reported harmful side effects of using electronic cigarettes, despite millions of people using them, there should be a giant RED FLAG for this study. It is all about the money, and e cigarettes are a major danger to the profits of companies that directly compete for the quit smoking industry. Is it hypocritical for a scientist who supports Chantix despite its obvious dangers to then declare e cigarettes with no known side effects unsafe? OR, is it profitable for not only Pfizer but also for the scientists who rely on their funding to declare one product safe and the other unsafe?

Well written and straight to the point, I couldn't have said it better myself.

I'm no doctor but if one is reading my comment can you please confirm which is more lethal, cancer or restriction of the airway yet still able to breathe.


An increase in airway resistance is not "lung damage." Dr. Riccardo Polosa, an Italian asthma specialist stated, "A recent clinical safety assessment of one such product in 40 smokers showed that mouth and throat irritation and dry cough were commonly reported in the initial few weeks of use, but all appeared to wane spontaneously by the end of the study, after 24 weeks of regular use. Thus the authors’ conclusions are not fully supported by the data, and the accumulating evidence is rather strongly supportive of a good safety profile for the e-cigarettes."

I agree, the "findings" are dishonest. At best, they don't know whether lung damage is caused, sounds more like a temporary effect to me.

Tobacco Companies and Governments really are getting scared aren't they :-) they really dont want these things getting too popular
My Lung Capacity has increased since using one of these.
I can now run and climb stairs without being out of breath.
I couldnt when I was smoking

they didn't say smoking was better for you. they said basically both are bad things to do with your lungs just because you are not smoking your lungs are naturally better but to market the E cigs to non smokers is a bad idea and that's whats happening there are side effects not as bad as smoking but still, just because your able to do things normal people do doesn't mean anything. i can climb stairs too i can even run so why would i want to diminish my lung capacity at all??

E-Cigarettes vs. Tobacco

I have to comment that this article does not portray the e-cigarette as a tobacco harm reduction strategy. We do not market our products to non-smokers or people under the age of consent in the jurisdiction that they reside in.

We market to smokers. The vast majority of our customers are long time smokers, some with COPD, who have tried in vain to stop smoking. Many others don't really want to quit smoking, but recognize the long terms health effects plus pressures from family, friends and medical professionals.

It would seem that this interpretation of the Athens report is comparing apples to oranges. If you compare the damage that is caused by tobacco smoke as opposed to what seems to be a transient effect that might be caused by e-cigarettes, you have to come down on the side of the e-cigarette.

If you compare the contents of tobacco smoke with its 4,000 or so chemical by products, including tars and known carcinogens versus the ingredients in most e-cigarettes which is a vapor source (in PrimeVapor's case, vegetable glycerin, a food additive found in many products on your supermarket shelves), food grade flavor extracts and a smaller amount of nicotine (even in the strongest varieties) than is found in a tobacco cigarettes, the use of the e-cigarette seems to be a better choice.

Makers of e-cigarette give smokers a choice. A choice they have never had. They can use this product to reduce the harm that tobacco smoking can bring.

A tobacco harm reduction strategy is a viable healthcare policy and should be embraced by the medical community. Is there a need for further research? Of course. But a open mind is required.

Full disclosure: I am not a medical professional of any kind. I am president of PrimeVapor, Inc., an e-cigarette manufacturer and distributor.

Dr.Gratziou said her conclusion but she forgot to mention:

1) None of the 32 people was a vaper. I do not know how they puffed from electronic cigarette device but I imagine they inhaled liquid too (as 1st day of every vaper).

2) The study was about vapor of electronic cigarette compared to FRESH AIR. I think we all know that fresh air is healthier than vapor and that vapor is worse than fresh air.

3) The study have taken part 8 persons who have never smoked even one tobacco cigarette. All the electronic cigarettes aiming ADULT SMOKERS ONLY and not people who never smoked in their lives or children. So, what is the reason to include these people? Just to have the vaping "worse" enough?

If we also consider that people having chronic obstructive respiratory disease did not have any change in lung function during that study, Dr.Gratziou must propose them to replace immediately smoking with electronic cigarettes as smoking is bad and vaping has no effects.

We are bored of these studies.
Electronic cigarettes are made for smokers and provide an alternative solution to quit over 4000 chemicals contained in tobacco cigarettes. All doctors making money from drugs for smoking cessation, attack electronic cigarettes because they do not get payed that way.

I challenge ANYONE having at least ONE study which prooves that electronic cigarettes are WORSE than tobacco cigarettes for human health in just ONE parameter. If you hear anything, just let me know.

My dr. has approved of the e-cig. I have been on it for 3 months and when I told him, he said anything is better than a real cigarette. He said if it works for me than do it. I've tried Chantix, the patch, gum, cold turkey. Everything. I have COPD and I know I NEED to quit but it's the hardest thing I have ever tried to do. I breathe easier, my emergency inhaler is almost never in use anymore. I love it :)

This piece of news has been misinterpreted by the media. All the study proves is that the vapor produces a temporary rise in lung resistance, nothing more. The rest is pure bogus

I am a 50 year old male and have smoked for the past 38 years,(Heavy)
I was told by the docs that I have to give up smoking "right now"
as I have a clogged artery in my leg, the news was a big shock to me as I didnt see it comming, I have been using a Tank Vaporiser (much cheaper and more fore satisfying) ever since he gave me the news 6 weeks ago and it has been a "God send"
I have not been near a real ciggy,
as long as the Tank keeps me off the real ciggys then I will deal
with any problems of vaping later, my lungs feel alive!

is there any way to try g-cig free by mail?

You can get a disposable one at 7-11 or about any corner store for about 8 bucks.....

"The results showed that for all people included in the study, the e-cigarette caused an immediate increase in airway resistance"

Well duh! We obviously know inhaling chemicals will probably have an effect on our lungs. But your argument is temporary airway resistance?

C'mon, you need to be look into the bigger picture, ask e-cig users how their lungs feel after switching. Don't give us a study that is common sense.

I am not a smoker. I have never smoked anything in my life. I cannot even pretend to understand what the challenges are that smokers experience in trying to quit. I bought an e-vapor product yesterday, out of interest. It advertised to be a cappuccino flavour and that sounded interesting. I tried it. It was interesting and fun. My throat didn't burn, my eyes didn't water, the aroma was exceedingly pleasant. This will not become a habit for me, I will likely not buy another one for me, but for my friends, colleagues and acquaintances who smoke, I will recommend them. The novelty is that it is fun, you can blow smoke rings (maybe, if you already know how, hahaha, I don't and can't) your hands get the familiar thing to do, and the aroma is nowhere near offensive. The reality is that it is far less harmful than the 4000 chemicals that are in cigarettes, 21 of which are known and proved carcinogens. The reality is there IS NO SECOND HAND SMOKE, and breathing in the air scented with one of 100's of flavours is so much nicer than the truly offensive aroma of burned tobacco. I see no down-side to these, and if they work to help a dedicated addict of cigarette smoking find freedom from their addiction, I see only the shining tip of the e-vapor smoking cessation aide!

well sorry to say, but that is a dumb thing you've done. if you dont smoke, then stay away from e-cigarettes.

well sorry to say, but that is a dumb thing you've done. if you dont smoke, then stay away from e-cigarettes.

well sorry to say, but that is a dumb thing you've done. if you dont smoke, then stay away from e-cigarettes.

If we quit smoking cigarettes the government will have to try harder to kill us, actually they're doing a pretty good job, FLOURIDE IN OUR TAP WATER!!!. Its awfull look it up! FLOURIDE IS POISON AND SO IS SACCHARIN and phenyltronics. They want us to die. I have a cure for aids and cancer! Black sav and coconut! Ha ha do your own research I'm helping save lives. And the government hates this they want death. Look up "reptillian pact" it explains all about how we are being poisoned and why. We've been in trouble since 1770. Everything wrong with the world started with our founding (so called) fathers. Before calling me crazy do your own research !'! Our children's lives are at stake too! Its happening all day long, poison in your water, beat down by taxes, poison in food, chemtrails in air, flue shots that kill, swine flu, bird flu, cat flu, mad cow,its endless and relentless and all man ade. To kill your wife mother and families. Yea I'm pissed. Don't stop looking for the truth, and remember God will save us from ourselves soon. And he still hears us when we pray. Your welcome. Take care!

I feel so much better to know that there are others who tell the truth about things going on in our society, and world. I feel that you are a Christ like person your rite God will help us out in the things we do and will step in when we are serious bout quitting things. I have been a smoker for a while off & on im really intrested in trying the e-cigarette, and im praying its just tempororary because I plan to quit altogether, thanks for you comment, God bless us all.

Thank you!!! Most people are ignorant to the governments New World order.
I know alot of knowledge but you gave me some more info to research. I tell my friends about the chemtrails and they think Im crazy. Days they have bad headaches is when Ive seen them.

There's nothing we can do to stop them until EVERYONE wakes UP and starts doing something about it.

A lot are awake, my friend.. One tip.. Those NWO are in fact minions of yes.. Satan.. It still is the same war as from the beginning. Search youtube films of "Nephilim" or "Giants" to show some facts. Consider this. Get a Bible (free downloadable) and search for Yahushua(Jezus). We know a lot of people have their eyes closed for NWO. a lot have opened up their eyes for the NWO, but actually don't realize this is the oldest war going on. We are on the last days, see everything happening in the world. Please consider and be saved. Love, Peace to you.

Amen sista! and don't you know that the BIG tobacco companies are absolutely FUMING (no pun intended ha)that those of us who just couldn't seem to quit are no longer setting a stick on fire and inhaling it? I Love my Vaper and so does the rest of my family who, along with me, never thot I could quit smoking!

I've been a smoker since my teenage years and now I'm 42 years of age. Today I've just purchased the e-cig and hope to see the difference. So far I'm enjoying it and let see if I can stay away from buying a pack of cigarette...

i agree with u my fren,we have the same situation,,,,i am using now e- cig and share it my fren and my boss,,,,n he is a doctor, tnx e-cig U change my life.

Ok so we all agree that smoking electronic cigarettes are better than smoking tobacco cigarettes. BUT WE ARE NOT CONSIDERING IS IF SOMEONE'S TRYING TO CUT THE NICOTINE ADDICTION ARE THEY REALLY DOING THAT??? ARE THEY CONSIDERING THAT THERE'S MORE THAN 1 DRUG THAT THE ADDICTION IS TO... IN THIS CASE. so maybe there's no side effects to the actual carcinogens and tobacco smoke but let's not forget they're still in addiction. Nicotine is still ruling their lives being a dictator of every time they walk out the door or sit in their house making sure they have to have their fix. Whenever anything rules us and we don't RULE it we lose some fight in our emotional state, we psychologically feel defeated. The reason To stop any addiction is because We want to feel like we have control of our lives... in every arena, especially the control of the health of our lives.

well actually there is a way to do that with e-cigarettes, you can moderately lower the nicotine intake during a 3 month period (like i did) now i haven't smoked neither for the past 2 years. The problem arises when people such as yourself don't know what it means to be depraved of nicotine and think by using mind altering drugs is the best way to go. Tell pfizer they have already lost the battle, the millions of people that actually managed to quit using e-cigarette will have the last say.

Oh Yes!!!! I just started a few weeks ago and NO withdrawals or even psychological withdraw because the e-cig is so satisfying. It's a miracle for me cuz I NEVER thot I'd be able to quit. I'm at 24 nicotine level right now but I plan to reduce the nicotine over time down to 18 then 14 and then hopefully I can go on down to zero nicotine! I figure that even if my oral fixation with smoking never leaves then if I'm 'vaping' zero nicotine, it still has to be way better than the actual fire on a stick! :)

As a former 35 yr smoker, I'll take addiction to vaping over the carcinogens ANY day of the week! Ppl like myself are extremely grateful for something,,, ANYTHING that Ends the SMoke! :)

Greece has the most corrupt doctors in Europe if not the whole world, people like xristina gratsiou and the heads of companies such a pfizer should be locked away for spreading such lies without any proper test results. they are a disgrace to their profession

Have smoked since 14. Started on e-cigs last week and stopped smoking tobacco right away. I sleep better, have more energy, not out of breath and this is just after a week. They do work and you can reduce the levels of nicotine as time goes on. I was the biggest cynic of them, tried the patches, just stopping, hypnotism, you name it, I tried it. This is a massive thing for me to be able to not have tobacco as a crutch. It could be argued that the e-ciggy is a new crutch for me but that depends on me and how I feel I want to progress with it. I would however suggest that medical bodies wanting to regulate them will not be for the public's safety but so that governments can get their hands on taxing them. After all. how much revenue will they loose from not getting the tax from tobacco based products.

I love e cigarettes because I don't smell when I smoke them and I used to go through at least a pack a day and I'd always smell and my wife hated it and it was like that for 14 years.I love it because it saves me a bunch of money and I still get the same feeling I got when I smoked a normal cigarette,plus I don't have to worry about ash trays and when I'm done with it I can just put it my pocket and turn it off.I found a site that has all the information that you could possibly want about e cigarettes.Here is the link,I highly recommend it.

It genuinely saddens me to hear that they're trying to illegalise the use of e-cgis, I know many people who have quit using these and have been able to do so right away without the use of the likes of Pfizers products! Wake up, this is ALL to do with profit (much like everything else), how can they potentially ban the use of VG (Vegetable Glycering) & nicotine but keep selling ciggarettes with over 4000+ known carcinogens??? It doesnt make ANY sense!

These compaines make me sick, they'll happily pumop you full of all sorts of shit in your food & drink etc. (just look at the effects of some sweeteners, perservatives) to maximise products

Potentially addictive? Might cause a nicotine overdose? come on!

There should be a petition for the e-cig (probably already is)


My father was diagnosed with non-small cell lung cancer in October of 2012. He had been a smoker most of his life but quit over 10 years ago. He is stage IV and this will kill him. I have been a smoker for 20 years myself and have tried to quit numerous times and have failed. I even tried Chantix and the effect it had on my dreams and mood were horrible. Another failed attempt. My husband brought home the ecigs 2 days ago and we are doing great! I NEVER want my son to feel how I do concerning my father, and yes, I may still get cancer; or in a car accident tomorrow. This is working when nothing else has! After 2 days I am not waking up coughing and use the ecig less and less already.

Iam 47 I have smoked sence I was about 12, I do have asthma had sence the day i was born, I started using the e-cig about 6mth ago on and off, and i know when i start using it,it can make my chest alittle tight but it goes away in a few min, and the long i go with out a real smoke the best i really can breath. Now my hubby is trying too and that helps. living in canada makes it harder to got my liquids but it been working out not to bad, But over all there is no one out there that can say e-smokes are more hurmfull then real smokes. I hope some day people we see how much good e-smoke can do for people.

I started using the e-cig 5 days ago and its the best thing iv ever tried. If they were really unsure of what harm they could do you im sure they wouldnt be able to sell them. Iv smoked like a trooper for years my dad had an heart attack and my mum suffered a mini stroke both whom have both stopped smoking through their illnesses. I want to see my kids grow up and dont want it to be something serious that happens to me to make me stop. I really cant believe how well the e-cig works I feel so much healthier already and satisfied at the same time. Its gotta be better than a proper cig. Goodluck all

The FDA is attempting to ban e-cigarettes. If you can locate an online petition to stop this, please do so. It's very interesting to me that the FDA would allow for the continued use of real cigarettes which are known and proven to cause health issues leading up to possible death yet, because the government isn't receiving tax funds on e-cigarettes, they are attempting to ban them.

Ok they keep going on about how ecigs are unproven dangerous whatever but they refuse to listen to REAL people those of us who are long term HEAVY smokers who have QUIT smoking real cigs with these after trying all the medically approved useless crap! E cigs WORK! Bottom line they are breaking the smoking addictions in so many of us! They are safer than real cigs--that is common sense! I have quit cold turkey for 3 full weeks this time because of e cigs I have no desire to ever smoke a real cig again! I was ready to go back to them when my non smoking kids brought me one and asked me to try it. It works! Aren't the thousands like me and many of my friends proof enough that this silly little device works? If all the non smoking groups truly wanted us to quit they would support these things! My doctor does but then he cares about me as his patient as real living human being not just some abstract silly argument like the "ban e smokes" groups do. Simple fact these work!

Can e cigg. Cause a lung cancer? Or ther diseases...

Nicotine simply relaxes the muscles. The 10 minutes period sounds about right.

I've been a smoker since I was 12 years old. I'm now 32. I've tried repeatedly to quit, and even during pregnancy I was still sneaking a half a cigarette before bed.

I started using the ecig just over a week ago. And already, I have more energy, I'm not waking up coughing up mucousy chunks anymore (gross, but true), and I just FEEL better. I don't stink of smoke when I hug my kids. And I have absolutely zero interest in smoking an analog cigarette.

I've already ordered the next step down in nicotine, I'm planning to work my way down to zero nicotine ecig liquid so I can just have that around to ease the occasional craving.

I know it's not an "approved" stop-smoking device, but my ecig has been a lifesaver. This is the very first time quitting smoking has been easy for me. And honestly, even if I end up with an ecig habit, I don't mind. Anything to keep me from smoking another cigarette.

There aren't yet enough studies on the safety of ecigs over the long term, of course because they are relatively new, but I realize that I am a guinea pig and I should be able to make that decision for myself. The FDA and their fat wallets can shove it.

I still can't believe they allow aspartame and related chemicals to be put in our food. Now THAT stuff is evil. Give me a scoop of real sugar any day.

This was a terrible study. Why? because they didn't compare it to smoking a regular cigarette. Plus doesn't inhaling anything besides air cause immediate and temporary restriction?.... what a stupid study. I wish I could get paid to do such poor research.

Yes they can say they are "potentially" unsafe because it makes it easier for you to ingest more nicotine. Which you can actually die from too much nicotine...

On a side note; I've been smoking for 10 years, full flavor marlboro reds, and nothing else. I've had the e-cig (made in America) for 2 days now. And already I don't smoke half as much of the real ones, nor want to. I also feel like I can breathe better.

I have been on the ecigarrette since July 2012, my problem now is heartburn. Does anyone else have this problem? I haven't had a real cigarette since July and have felt better but just in the past two weeks have been experiencing very bad heartburn when I use the ecigarette. any input would be appreciated.

I'm not a doctor. I've been smoking e cigs for only two weeks with no significant change in my digestive system. I do know that nicotine directly affects your digestive system. You might want to lower the nicotine level of your e cig. Another possibility might be because you quit smoking you might have an increased appetite. In turn increased heartburn. Maybe smaller portions of food more often instead of large meals might help.

im a smoker who is really addicted to cigar im only 19 and everytime my girlfriend sees me having a smoke
she totally break my pack of cigarette. and she always telling me if i dont stop smoking i might die early .
so i decided to buy e-cigar , to control my addiction in smoking i just dont wanna die because of those damn cancers i wanna die because im too old not bcause im too sick cause i have cancer damn!.
May God really help me and guide me .


Since e cigs put moisture in your lungs, I'm wonderingg if this is s why have had pneumonia
2 times since i have been using e-cigs. Does anyone know anything on this?

e cigarette liquid is propylene glycol, nicotine and flavoring. PG is 100% NON-TOXIC and is APPROVED by the FDA for use in all cosmetics, food stuffs,ect. the most common flavoring used in the mixture is none other than FDA APPROVED CANDY FLAVORINGS.bicotine is nicotine and the the nicotine used in e cigarettes is PHARMACEUTICAL GRADE, meaning its very pure. it has to be or it wouldnt mix properly with the other stuff and wouldnt vaporize. point being the only reason there is any resistance in the sales and use of e cigarettes is they are taking paying customers away from BIG TOBACCO....nothing more, nothing less. when i started using e cigs, i went from being a 3 pack a day smoker to a 1/4 pack or LESS a day smoker. yesterday i had one analog (real) cigarette. i enjoy "smoking: the ecig much more than i ever did a regular cig. i can breath like i never smoked before, i can now smell smells i havent in about 30 years, food tastes much betterand i dont cough. i buy my own supplies and mix my own e liquid. for what it costs for one carton of regular smokes which before the ecig would last me about 3 1/2 days,i can mix enough e liquid to last me OVER A MONTH. plus mixing my own i can adjust the nicotine level in it. if a person wants to quit, they can mix one strength one week, say 6 mg (which is pretty low to start believe it or not)and next week, mix at 5 mg, then 4 mg, and so on until they are no longer using ANY nicotine in their liquid at all. in canada, their tobacco companies are so greedy that they have outlawed e cigs with nicotine in them, but yet, you can still buy them with PG and flavoring. dont listen to all the hoopla thats running around about the POSSIBILITY of them being bad for you. they are a million times BETTER for you than regular cigarettes ever were.

What do you think about the new e cig store
Huge marketplace. Is it a good thing?

I have been on the ecigarrette since July 2012, my problem now is heartburn. Does anyone else have this problem? I haven't had a real cigarette since July and have felt better but just in the past two weeks have been experiencing very bad heartburn when I use the ecigarette. any input would be appreciated.

I'm with most of the commentators. Would you rather have cancer or maybe a temporary restriction to your lungs. Ecigs work! I smoked for 28 years and it's the only thing that works for me.