Can e-cigarettes help people quit smoking?

Introduction of pod pod manufacturers: What is an electronic cigarette? Electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes, ECs) are hand-held electronic atomization devices that generate mist by heating liquid e-liquid, and the components of e-liquid are generally nicotine and flavor. E-cigarettes allow nicotine to be inhaled into the body in the form of vapor, replacing the form of smoke. Certain harmful substances in tobacco can cause smokers to suffer from smoking-related diseases. Because e-cigarettes do not burn tobacco, users have lower levels of exposure to harmful substances than traditional smokers.

The English word used exclusively for electronic cigarettes is “vaping”, which means vaping in the form of electronic cigarettes. Many people use e-cigarettes to help quit tobacco.

Why we did this Cochrane review

Quitting smoking can reduce your risk of lung cancer and other diseases. But many people find that quitting smoking is not an easy task. We wanted to find out whether e-cigarettes are helpful for smoking cessation and whether e-cigarette users who seek to quit smoking experience any adverse effects.

what have we done?

We searched for studies on e-cigarettes helping people quit smoking.

We searched for randomized controlled trials in which participants were randomly assigned to receive different treatments. This study design provides the strongest evidence for efficacy. We also searched for studies in which all subjects were treated with e-cigarettes.

we want to know:

How many people have successfully stopped smoking for at least six months; and

How many people have e-cigarettes had any ill effects.

What have we found?

We retrieved 50 studies involving a total of 12,430 participants. The studies compared e-cigarettes with other smoking cessation methods, including:

Nicotine replacement therapy (NTR), such as patches or nicotine gum;


· E-cigarettes without nicotine;

Behavioural support, such as giving advice or counselling; or

· No action is taken.

Some studies have also evaluated both nicotine replacement therapy and e-cigarettes.

These studies were conducted in the United States (21), United Kingdom (9), Italy (7), Australia (2), New Zealand (2), Greece (2), Belgium (1), Canada (1) , Poland (1), South Korea (1), South Africa (1), Switzerland (1) and Turkey (1).

What are the results of the review? Generic pod manufacturers sorted out and found:

Existing research showed that cessation of smoking for more than six months after using nicotine-containing e-cigarettes compared with using nicotine replacement therapy (3 studies; 1498 people) or nicotine-free e-cigarettes (3 studies; 802 people) There may be more.

Nicotine-containing e-cigarettes may be more helpful for smoking cessation than no support or behavioral support alone (4 studies; 2312 people).

10 out of 100 smokers who use nicotine-containing e-cigarettes to quit are likely to be successful. This compares to 6 out of 100 smokers who use nicotine replacement therapy or nicotine-free e-cigarettes. For people with no or only behavioral support, only 4 per 100 people successfully quit.

We are uncertain whether there is a difference in adverse effects between the use of nicotine-containing e-cigarettes and nicotine-free e-cigarettes, nicotine replacement therapy, no support, or only behavioral support. The number of adverse effects, including serious adverse effects, reported for all measures in the available studies was low.

The most commonly reported adverse effects of nicotine-containing e-cigarettes are sore throat or mouth, headache, cough and nausea. These adverse effects gradually subsided as subjects used nicotine-containing e-cigarettes for longer.

How reliable are these findings? Generic pod manufacturers replied:

The number of studies from which the results come from is small, and the data for some indicators vary widely.

We have moderate confidence that nicotine-containing e-cigarettes help more people quit smoking than nicotine replacement therapy or nicotine-free e-cigarettes. However, these results may change if more evidence emerges.

We have no support or behavioural support for nicotine-containing e-cigarettes

We included studies that met the following criteria: trial subjects had a smoking habit for at least 6 months, or had some adverse effect lasting at least one week.

Search date We included studies published up to January 2020.

When more evidence becomes available, adverse effects-related outcomes may change.

Key Information

Nicotine-containing e-cigarettes may indeed help smokers quit smoking for more than half a year. Nicotine-containing e-cigarettes may work better than nicotine replacement therapy and nicotine-free e-cigarettes.

Nicotine-containing e-cigarettes may be more effective than no support or behavioral support alone, and may not have serious adverse effects.

We still need more reliable evidence for the effects of e-cigarettes, especially newer ones with better nicotine release.


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