Consideration of vaping products as an alternative to adult smoking: a narrative review
Tobacco harm reduction is a public health strategy aimed at lessening the health impact of cigarette smoking. This approach involves using non-combustible alternatives to cigarettes, such as electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes), which deliver nicotine without combustion. Unlike traditional cigarettes, e-cigarettes produce an aerosol without burning, resulting in lower levels of harmful or potentially harmful chemicals.
This narrative review delves into existing literature examining the chemistry of e-cigarette aerosols, associated toxicology in cell culture and animal models, and clinical studies investigating changes in biomarkers of smoke exposure after individuals switch to e-cigarettes, both in the short and long term. Upon reviewing the available evidence, this narrative suggests that there is potential for harm reduction among adult smokers who transition to e-cigarettes.
In short, there's good evidence that e-cigarettes can help reduce harm from smoking, but they're not completely risk-free. The best choice for adults is to quit smoking because it has well-known long-term risks. But for those who can't quit, using non-burning options like e-cigarettes seems like a good alternative, though we still need more information about their long-term effects on health.