E-Cigarettes Under Fire: Health Hazard or Tobacco-free Triumph?

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Supporters of the e-cigarette see it as a safer alternative to traditional cigarettes. After all, it produces no smoke and uses rechargeable batteries. It's even promoted as a new way to get around public smoking bans. But this nicotine delivery device is not safe. Groups like the American Lung Association, American Cancer Society, American Heart Association and the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids have called for its removal from the market.

Joel Dunnington, M.D., professor in M. D. Anderson's Department of Diagnostic Radiology, and Rob Watkins, a puppet from Too Cool to Smoke: with The Kids on the Block, chime in on the growing debate.

Puppet appears courtesy of The Kids on the Block, Inc., Columbia, Maryland,

If you are in the Houston area, request a visit from Rob. Too Cool to Smoke: with The Kids on the Block puppet show is a free tobacco awareness program for children in kindergarten through fourth grade.

So what do YOU think? Let us know your take on the e-cigarette controversy.

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Visit our website to learn more about smoking and tobacco, including how to quit.


Update 7/22/2009:

The FDA has reported that e-cigarettes contain toxic chemicals and carcinogens. Laboratory tests of two leading brands found that they contained diethylene glycol, an ingredient found in antifreeze and known to be toxic to humans. Read the press release to find out more.

I am converting from regular cigarettes to the e-cig. My breathing has improved, my asthma is improving, and I find I am craving it alot less than a regular cigarette. I use the low level of nicotine. I see this as a tool to quit. I also see the resistance of "states" as a possible "withdraw" from the revenue states make on smokers. It has nothing to do with our health. No one can convince me that this product is more dangerious than smoking, and for christ sakes I think it is time we do something about drinkers, they kill people on the road, kill people in their homes (domestic violance), they kill people at their work, and drinking also kills the liver, as well as other organs. I can not find a single incident where a "SMOKING DRIVER" killed a family of 4, or "SMOKER" stabs, chokes or shoots family. Somebody needs to get the priority straight.

I personally don't see the danger in e-cigs. I personally used them to quite. I was a smoker for 13 years and after having kids it really changed my perspective I wanted to see them grow old. Personally that was my reason to quit so I tried every method and came across E Cig. I think the E-Cigarette worked for me because it simulates real cigarettes. Everyone has their own reasons and methods but I definitely recommend it for anyone really serious about quitting.

Yes it is true that it contain nicotine that is not completely safe but it contain very less amount of toxic substances in comparison to tobacco cigarette.

I have severe COPD and I also have heart rhythm problems. I was waiting in line at a local CVS pharmacy to get a RX filled. I started getting chest tightening and a tingling in my jaw and near the top of my left shoulder. I started feeling dizzy and a bit nauseous, and my heart started beating irregularly. I also started sweating somewhat profusely. Unbeknownst to me, there was a nurse copiously and profusely puffing on an e-cigarette in line in front of me. When I noticed that she was doing something I had never seen before, I asked her what it was she was using. She told me, "It's only harmless vapor being exhaled." That exhaled "smoke" wasn't as harmless as she convinced herself it was. I was beginning to go into a crisis because of her exhaled "vapor smoke." When she left and the surrounding air cleared, my problem also cleared. I don't think these e-cigarettes are as "harmless" as they are touted to be. I had no issues before she blew the vapor smoke my way, once doing so directly into my face. I did have systemic issues when she chain puffed the device. After she left and the air cleared, luckily the symptoms I had also cleared up. I did go see my doctor about this and a report was filed with the FDA.

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