The result of a recent study conducted by researchers at the Medical University of South Carolina suggest that smokers using electronic cigarettes tend to smoke less and increase the number of quit attempts. Scientists led by Matthew Carpenter, a tobacco control and addiction expert at the cancer center at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC), evaluated sixty tobacco smokers, split into two categories – 46 were randomized to use e-cigarettes however they wished, and 22 were randomized to a control group which didn’t use e-cigarettes IQOS at all. Those in the first group had to choose between a more powerful vaping device with a higher dose of nicotine, or am weaker vaporizer with a lower dose of nicotine. Participants were followed over a period of four months, and the findings of this research were recently published in the Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention journal. The goal of this pilot study was to gain valuable insight into the effects of e-cigarettes on tobacco smokers, more specifically if they can actually help people kick the deadly habit. I’m going to be perfectly honest and admit that, seeing as this is an U.S. study, I expected the results to be negative, but it turns out that they are pretty much in line with similar studies conducted by scientists outside the States. I have nothing against American research, I just find it very odd that they keep coming up with conclusions that completely contradict already existing evidence, so this particular study is actually a surprise. Anyway, Carpenter and his team found that when smokers were offered electronic cigarettes without any kind of requirements or instructions of use, uptake was significant, and some of the participants actually went out and bought their own vaporizers. Those who used electronic cigarettes of the four months smoked 37 percent less cigarettes on average, and were considerably more likely to attempt to quit smoking tobacco, compared to those in the control group. Researchers also not that of the two available vaping devices, the more powerful one, with the stronger doses of nicotine, got better results, which confirms that advanced vaporizers are more likely to help people quit. Now if only someone could convince the FDA to change that predicate date… “The results are consistent with trials done outside the U.S.,” Matthew Carpenter said. “Many people rated the e-cigarettes similar to their usual product, which further suggests that these products might promote switching. Anything that gets smokers off combustible cigarettes is a good thing. Combustible cigarettes are the most harmful form of nicotine delivery. Alternative delivery of nicotine, through e-cigarettes, could significantly reduce harm and the risks of cancer and other diseases to smokers.” It’s refreshing to hear an U.S. tobacco and addiction expert talk about the benefits of tobacco harm reduction, I have to say. Public health experts in Europe have been talking about this for years now, but people like Stanton Glantz and other so-called anti-tobacco crusaders seem only interested in seeing vaping regulated into oblivion or banned completely. I guess there is still hope, though.