Trials Conducted On 662 Smokers, ecigarettes, & Results

Towards the end of last year a scientific review of 11 observational studies and two trials consisting of 662 smokers, was published by the Cochrane Library, considered to be the world’s leader in systematic reviews.

Since it comes from such a creditable source and is still very relevant as to the effectiveness of electronic cigarettes as a replacement to tobacco cigarettes, we thought readers would find it of value.

It offers clear indication of the path that has been taken by the experts in ascertaining electronic cigarette effectiveness and also indicates the advancement in research leading up to date.

The independent review was co-authored by Professor Peter Hajek of Queen Mary University London’s Center for Tobacco & Alcohol Studies, and the findings were that e-cigarettes can help smokers quit or at the very least cut down on tobacco cigarettes, without experiencing any short to mid-term negative health effects.

Explanation of An RCT – Randomly Controlled Trial

An RCT stands for a randomized controlled trial. This is a type of scientific experiment, medical in this instance, where the subjects that are being studied are randomly assigned one or the other of the different available treatments that are being used in the study. The RCT is frequently referred to as the Gold standard when conducting a clinical trial.

Two RCTs Analyse E-Cig Effectiveness As Smoking Cessation Aid

In this instance two randomized controlled trials were analysed for the effectiveness of e-cigarettes as a smoking cessation aid and they uncovered some very interesting discoveries.

Approximately one in ten smokers, that’s 9% of the smokers who used the electronic cigarettes that contained nicotine, actually managed to stop smoking tobacco cigarettes within a year.

By comparison, in the second trial that was conducted, 4% of the smokers who used e-cigarettes that were nicotine-free, also managed to stop smoking cigarettes as well.

When looking at those smokers from the tests that didn’t manage to to quit smoking after using e-cigarettes, the scientists found that 28% of them that were using a nicotine-free placebo, still managed to reduce their cigarette consumption on a daily basis by half.

Those that had used electronic cigarettes that had contained nicotine, 36% of them managed to cut down the amount of cigarettes that they smoked in half.

From the data that was gathered, there was no evidence of any adverse effects on any of the subjects health, be it short term or medium term from the use of electronic cigarettes.

Professors Find Results “Encouraging”

Bearing in mind comments on these studies were made well before those reported last month by Public Health England, Professor Hajek had this to say:

“Although our confidence in the effects of electronic cigarettes as smoking cessation interventions is limited because of the small number of trials, the results are encouraging.”

He went on to say: “Both trials used electronic cigarettes with low nicotine delivery and it is likely that more recent products are more effective, as previous research suggests that higher and faster nicotine delivery facilitates treatment effects.”

Obsolete E-Cigs Used – But Tests Still Prove A Point

King’s College London’s Institute of Psychiatry’s professor of tobacco addiction Ann McNeill had this to say:

“While the studies included were limited in number and used e-cigarettes which are now largely obsolete, the results are clear. E-cigarettes are helping smokers to quit or substantially cut down the number of cigarettes they smoke.”

The Addiction medical journal’s editor-in-chief Professor Robert West someone who has been a long term activist in the research of electronic cigarettes said:

“It’s early days but it seems that these devices are already helping tens of thousands of smokers to stop each year.”

A Viewpoint From The Other End Of The Spectrum!

The vice-president of the UK Faculty of Public Health Doctor John Middleton took a seemingly different point of view, and issued a statement that some might consider not entirely clear. he said:

“While e-cigarettes may help smokers who want to quit, we don’t yet have enough evidence of the impact they are having on other people, particularly children and smokers who also use e-cigarettes.”

He also added concerns that e-cigarettes may encourage “a new generation of customers for the tobacco industry,” undermining the massive progress made in the UK over the last few decades.

Professor Hajek – Why Some Oppose Electronic Cigarettes

Professor Hajek had his own reasoning as to why electronic cigarettes sometimes faces stiff opposition from unexpected sources even the likes of some public health doctors.

He believes that it is due to the electronic cigarette being viewed as a ‘disruptive technology’ that threatens even those that have ‘established public health positions’.

Then there are those that have vested interests namely Big Pharma (The huge Pharmaceutical Industry worth billions a year,) along with the tobacco industry.

He added in reference to those that frequently make claims that electronic cigarettes may contain a handful of toxins should not make direct comparisons with inhaling fresh air but should finally shift the focus to that of tobacco cigarettes. As is well known, these are far more dangerous.