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I bought my first electronic cigarette (e-cigarette, e-cig) in 2012. After a month of smoking and using an e-cig (vaping), I finished off my last pack of Camels and gave up tobacco forever. There are thousands of Americans who have followed that same path to a smoke-free life.

If you ask the American Lung Association (ALA), though, my vaping compatriots and I must not exist, because the anti-tobacco group says e-cigarettes don't help smokers quit. As Fox Business reported on December 5:

While the e-cigarette industry tells smokers falsely that switching to their products is...

Vaping Not SmokingA pseudo-debate on the editorial page of Monday's USA Today purports to clarify the issues swirling around e-cigarettes. Of course, the scales are tilted just a bit by the editorial choice of proponent for the Pro side: Lorillard CEO Murray Kessler. Never mind that Mr. Kessler s points in contrast to the USA Today staff product, which was likely ghost-written by...

vapeTomorrow, Nov. 20th, is the 39th annual Great American Smokeout, sponsored by The American Cancer Society. Let s have a look at how well that s been working, in the most relevant terms: how many adults still smoke, and how many have successfully smoked-out, that is, quit?

See this graphic for some perspective:

AdultSmoking...

Vaping, NOT Smoking

An article in the N.Y. Times Business section highlighted the marketing tactics of the e-cigarette business, and the sub-headline should have been Guilty, by association.

Not that the real headline was any better: E-Cigarette Makers Ads Echo Tobacco s Heyday. The news article featured quotes from the omnipresent foe of...

Vaping, NOT SmokingYesterday s JAMA Pediatrics had an article co-written by well-known anti-e-cigarette crusader, UCSF s Stanton Glantz, who has in the past shown a propensity for twisting data to suit his pre-determined agenda. Well, here he goes again.

Blandly titled Electronic Cigarettes and Conventional Cigarette Use Among US Adolescents: A Cross-sectional Study, he (and his co-author, a UCSF colleague, Dr. Lauren M. Dutra) have re-analyzed data from the latest National Youth...

Vaping Not Smoking

ACSH's Dr. Gilbert Ross and videographer director Ana Simovska spent a most productive morning session yesterday with four officials associated with the NYC Council. Also participating in the educational session that seemed to go on and on, as the legislative assistants soaked up much e-cigarette-related data, was Spike Babaian, devoted vaping exponent and co-proprietor of Manhattan's first retail e-cigarette shop, Vape New York.

The ACSH "delegates" provided the...

In its tenth anniversary edition, the latest Tobacco Atlas report by the World Lung Foundation (WLF) had some bad news to share: Tobacco-related deaths have nearly tripled in the past decade. If current trends continue, tobacco use and exposure will be responsible for the death of one person every six seconds which adds up to a billion deaths this century.

However, ACSH s Dr. Gilbert Ross has a bone to pick with the wording in the WLF report: It s not tobacco that s responsible for these deaths, he says, it s cigarettes! Smoking is what s responsible for killing 50 million people in the last ten years cigarettes are the cause of...

Courtesy Richard Levine/Corbis Courtesy Richard Levine/Corbis

A recent op-ed in the Sacramento Bee issues a strange warning about e-cigarettes, saying that they may cause hearing loss among teenagers. The piece was authored by Dave Fabry, identified as the vice-president of audiology for Starkey Hearing Technologies in Eden Prairie, MN.

While the urge is to simply view this as fear-mongering by someone who does not understand nicotine modes of action (and confuses it with smoking, which...

Super Bowl LIV is coming up this Sunday. Since our staff is located in NYC, DC, and Seattle, we have no rooting interest in this game. We just hope it's a good one.

But we do have a rooting interest in sound science and smart public health. Here's where we appeared in recent days and weeks.

1) Dr. Alex Berezow's critical response to an article claiming a link between maternal fluoride exposure and lower childhood IQ was cited by the American Dental Association (ADA)....

Through education and taxation, the struggle to end tobacco smoking has made tremendous gains over the last fifty years; some believe that we are entering the final phase of stopping the plague. Public health thinking has evolved too, cigarettes are now considered “nicotine delivery” systems and so they have taken on new forms – from the “low to no” nicotine cigarettes, to gum, patches, and vaporizers.

If we cannot end smoking short of prohibition, and we know how well abstinence only works, then we are compromising by containment, reducing harm while promoting cessation.

As a physician, advising patients to stop smoking remains the standard best practice, but for those who find it more difficult to quit addictive behavior, we are more practical and consider harm...