The studies being done on electronic cigarettes, or e-cigs have been confusing to say the least. While they tend to have the same amount of nicotine as traditional cigarettes, the level of other toxins and carcinogens are lower in vapor devices. Does this mean they are safe? Not exactly.
The latest research comes from the Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo NY and it's the first study to say that e cigs are less dangerous than traditional cigarettes. Their research involved daily adult smokers, who'd been smoking for an average of 12 years. For a two week period they substituted e-cigs for their traditional smokes. Over the course of the study participants levels of seven nicotine metabolites and 17 biomarkers of exposure to carcinogens and toxicants were measured. 12 of the 17 measured biomarkers showed declines in exposure. The decline in toxicant levels was similar to the decline seen among tobacco users who quit smoking. Nicotine metabolites remained unchanged. The study is not without it's problems. Lead author Dr. Goniewicz received a research grant from Pfizer, a pharmaceutical company that markets smoking-cessation medications. He and colleague Dr. Benowitz have been consultants to pharmaceutical companies that market smoking cessation medications, and Benowitz has been an expert witness in litigation against tobacco companies.