Posted 29 Sep, 2020
Comprehensive review suggests e-cigarettes unlikely to increase quitting rates in Australia
welcomes the release of a summary report of a body of work from the Australian
National University, which includes a review of national and international data
on the effectiveness of e-cigarettes for smoking cessation.
A key finding is that there is insufficient evidence that nicotine-delivering e-cigarettes are more effective in helping people to quit compared to any other intervention or even ‘cold-turkey’.
According to Dr Sarah White, director of Quit, national and international data and research are converging on the view that e-cigarettes are not “the silver bullet” to help a large number of Australians quit smoking.
there has been a coordinated advocacy campaign and
political lobbying by e-cigarette companies and allies that
has highlighted the stories of people who have used e-cigarettes
reality, though, is that most people who have used
e-cigarettes have not successfully quit. The silent
majority includes people for whom e-cigarettes have not worked
for quitting, who are using e-cigarettes and
cigarettes interchangeably and, worst of all, who have
started or re-started smoking because of e-cigarettes.”
White said that there was an emerging consensus that – as well as increasing
the risk of never smokers starting to smoke – e-cigarettes were leading former smokers
back to smoking.
is becoming evident from international studies is that former smokers who had
used e-cigarettes were twice as likely to relapse and start smoking again,” she
program of work by the ANU was led by one of Australia’s best epidemiologists,
Professor Emily Banks and commissioned by the Australian Government. The study
team noted there were few randomised clinical trials testing the effectiveness
of e-cigarettes for quitting and their quality was generally not high. The best
of these trials found that e-cigarettes were more effective than nicotine
replacement therapy, but 80% of the people who used e-cigarettes were still
addicted to nicotine one year later.
the end of the day, it seems that e-cigarettes are keeping people
addicted to nicotine or are
re-triggering a nicotine addiction. What we want to see is people who smoke breaking completely free from nicotine addiction and not being enslaved to commercial interests who just want people to buy their products.
Quit Victoria is a
partnership between VicHealth, the State Government of Victoria and Cancer
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