Research News

E-cigarettes work better than nicotine replacement and willpower to help people quit smoking

BMJ 2014; 348 doi: (Published 21 May 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;348:g3419
  1. Nigel Hawkes
  1. 1London

Electronic cigarettes could substantially improve public health by making it easier for smokers to quit, concludes a new study that showed a 60% higher quit rate among e-cigarette users than among smokers who relied on willpower alone or nicotine replacement treatments bought over the counter.

The findings are likely to add fuel to the debate over whether e-cigarettes are a force for good (by helping people give up real cigarettes) or for evil (because they “renormalise” the activity of smoking). Robert West, professor of health psychology and director of tobacco studies at University College London, a coauthor of the study, came down firmly in the first camp at a briefing in London on the publication of the study in Addiction.1

“There is no evidence at all of …

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