Hello and welcome (hopefully) back to the A Clean Cigarette Blog. This is Dawn here and I am honored to be bringing you part III of the series “A Peek Inside the 2017 E-Cigarette Summit”. If you have not had the chance to read part I and/or part II, feel free to take a quick peek. Also please keep in mind this series is done to report on what took place at the E-Cigarette Summit. The thoughts and views may not represent A Clean Cigarette’s thoughts or views. A Clean Cigarette brand electronic cigarettes DO contain nicotine. Nicotine is an addictive substance. A Clean Cigarette is not intended to treat, diagnose or cure any illness. Nothing you inhale into your lungs besides clean air is good for you.
Okay now on to:
A Peek Inside the 2017 E-Cigarette Summit: Part III
In Part II of this series, I mentioned that there were two basic sides to the discussion that took place at this summit. There may have been different shades of opinions but the basic black and white breakdown equaled the enthusiasts and the skeptics. The E-cigarette summit which took place in Washington D.C. on this past May 8th featured speakers on both sides of the electronic cigarette/vapor debate. We feel that if we are going to report on the subject it should be a report on ALL the speakers and as many of the facts as my note taking skills will allow me too. Both the enthusiast and the skeptics had a voice there and they will here as well.
The third speaker at the summit and the first speaker we will talk about today fell on the side of the skeptics. Asst. Professor Samir Soneji is a Ph.D. that comes to the summit from the Dartmouth Institute for Clinical Practice and Health Policy, Geisel School of Medicine, Dartmouth College. His interest in young adult and adolescent tobacco use made him an excellent voice for the youth protection side of the e-cigarette and vapor argument.
He made great points in regards to the fact that some companies specifically target minors with their childlike flavors and candy-like packaging. He also noted that some large cloud blowing products attract minors for sheer entertainment value. He draws the conclusion that there is a risk that e-cigarette and vapor products may increase the uptake of smoking in the adolescent and young adult populations. In Prof. Soneji’s words “Vapers who begin smoking are not necessarily those who would have smoked anyway.”
Another point Prof. Soneji made was that some of the same flavors that appear to entice the youngest potential vapers may bare the highest health risk. Flavors such as cherry for instance which contains benzaldehyde. It’s a chemical from cherries and other sources that creates the cherry flavor. It is considered safe to ingest but when inhaled it can cause irritation to the respiratory system. Another example he gave of this risk was in regards to the chemical diacetyl, which is found in buttery flavored E-juice. Diacetyl is also found in microwave popcorn, so it is used in the plants that produce microwave popcorn. This chemical causes a medical condition which is referred to as “popcorn lung”.
While these are valid issues and most of the enthusiasts, as well as the skeptics, believe that attention should be paid to the ingredients used in these products and that extra caution should be taken to ensure companies do not participate in marketing aimed at the younger populations or never smokers. It is important to remember that we talked about Prof. Kenneth Warner from the University of Michigan in Part II of this series. He drew out some pretty amazing conclusions in regards to the number of never smoking youth that could potentially be at risk and the number of adult smoking lives that could be saved due switching to electronic cigarettes. According to Prof. Warner in the next five years, looking at numbers and data collected from well-reputed sources, there could be a loss of up to 88,413 lives vs. a gain of 1,332,905 lives.
On a separate note from me: I would like to give a special thank you to this speaker. Even though his arguments and speaking points placed him firmly in the “skeptic” side of the issues, he came with an open heart. I know this because when the event was over, and we were all networking and making connections, Prof Soneji made it a point to find me and speak to me one on one. I had stood up at one point in the summit and addressed the panel with a question. (We will get to that when we get to that speaker!) Apparently, my question and my heart helped him put a face to all the cold hard data that he has spent so many hours studying. He offered me a very warm and heartfelt thank you for “putting a face on this issue”. He acknowledged that sometimes as a researcher the data is all that can be seen, but that data is talking about real people, with real stories, like mine.
Now I would like to thank him from the bottom of my heart, for caring enough to research this while retaining his heart through the black and white data. I do hope life leads us to a point where we have a chance to speak together again. Thank you! **Tips my hat to Asst. Prof. Samir Soneji.**
Our next speaker is a Professor of Health Policy, University of Stirling, Cancer Research and the Deputy Director of UK Center for Tobacco Studies (UKTAS). Prof. Linda Bauld has 20 years of experience in the tobacco cessation field and is a former scientific advisor on tobacco control for the UK Government.
Prof. Bauld, started her time on stage by clarifying a very important subject. She stated that even though the UK Government supports the use of electronic cigarettes and vapor products as smoking cessation tools, they DO in fact still care about the health and safety of their youth. ( I am pretty sure this was in direct response to Prof. Saneji’s previous statements on the youth risk and his stance that if we care about our youth we may not want to risk them becoming addicted to e-cigarettes.) Her statement garnered her a long applause and more than a few outbursts of support.
After that clarification, Prof. Bauld continued with her talking points which primarily focused on understanding the current data in regards to E-Cigarettes. Since E-Cigarettes are still a relatively new device and the way they are used, studied and regulated varies greatly depending on where in the world you are. She demonstrated through recent research how a countries regulations can impact the success smokers experience with electronic cigarettes when used to quit smoking.
Prof Bauld pointed out that in order to properly regulate this industry it important to understand what evidence is available regarding them and what evidence still needs to be gathered. According to Prof. Bauld smoking rates are at an all time low and if allowed e-cigarettes could be a great step in the right direction for tobacco harm reduction efforts.
She also stressed the importance of understanding nicotine and most importantly of understanding the dosage in regards to nicotine. More specifically, Prof Bauld addressed the fact that more research needs to be done on the dosage of nicotine delivered in products and that efforts should be made to guarantee the dosage on the packaging matches the dosage supplied by the device used. She took the time to help me understand what I need to be focused on.
For my part: She took the time to help me understand what I need to be focused on when it comes to the evidence necessary for this industry to move forward as well what regulations will have the largest impact on this product’s future designated use. The sheer amount of information she spoke about would be 3 or 4 blogs all on its own so I was only able to touch a small amount on her speaking points. I appreciate this very intelligent woman and am grateful that I was able to hear her point of view on this subject.
Which brings us to the end of another A Clean Cigarette Blog. Thank you again for stopping in to read this information and thank you ahead of time for sharing this information and the first two blogs for us. It is vital that we get the facts out about e-cigarettes and we can only do it with YOU.
As always, If you have any questions or comments about this or any of my blogs drop me a line at AccAnswers@gmail.com. Also, if you or a loved one is a current smoker and have not yet made the switch, please consider visiting www.acleancigarette.com for more information! Thank you so much and have a great day!!