Intended for healthcare professionals

Analysis Essay

E-cigarettes: the best and the worst case scenarios for public health—an essay by Simon Chapman

BMJ 2014; 349 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.g5512 (Published 09 September 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;349:g5512

Re: E-cigarettes: the best and the worst case scenarios for public health—an essay by Simon Chapman

Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS), of which electronic cigarettes are the most common prototype, are a recent development in tobacco harm reduction. The Oxford Dictionary named "vape" the 2014 word of the year, marking the rise of a billion-dollar electronic-cigarette industry. E-cigarettes, also known as e-vaping devices, were introduced to the Chinese market in 2004 and to the US market in 2007 and are now becoming popular in India.

Studies have revealed that e-cigarettes are not free from adverse effects, and the use of e-cigarettes by teenagers, especially middle-school children, has increased, resulting in the criticism of e-cigarettes worldwide. There are two views: some experts welcome ENDS as a pathway to the reduction of tobacco smoking, while others do not support their use, hence ENDS are the subject of a public health debate. Currently the use of e-cigarettes is apparently booming as “gateway devices” for smoking among young people. There is a need for well designed studies & pharmacovigilance programme for Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems.

Competing interests: No competing interests

21 November 2014
Dr.Rajiv Kumar
Associate Professor, Deptt. of Pharmacology
Dr.Jagjit Singh
Government Medical College & Hospital, Chandigarh 160030. INDIA
House No- 1156 B, Sector 32 B, Chandigarh , 160030. INDIA.