New National Academies report welcome contribution to e-cigarette debate, says the American Heart Association

January 23, 2018 Categories: Advocacy News

WASHINGTON, D.C.Jan 23, 2018 — American Heart Association CEO Nancy Brown issued the following statement today on a new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine on the health impact of e-cigarettes:   

“This new in-depth look at the complexities of e-cigarettes is a commendable, timely contribution to the ongoing dialogue about the effects of these tobacco products.  

The National Academies’ evidence summary supports many of the recommendations in the association’s 2014 e-cigarette policy statement. E-cigarettes may help adult smokers move away from conventional cigarettes and possibly reduce their exposure to the harmful toxicants and carcinogens they contain. But it’s important to remember that switching to e-cigarettes does not achieve the ultimate goal – quitting tobacco and ending an addiction to nicotine once and for all. We hope that message is not lost on the public as it absorbs this latest analysis.

As the report concludes there is substantial evidence that users of e-cigarettes can become dependent on these products and that the nicotine intake is comparable to conventional cigarettes. We would add that there is substantial evidence that using e-cigarettes can lead to cardiovascular dysfunction and the National Academies highlights some of that research. 

Even more worrisome, as this report emphasizes, is the substantial research that indicates the use of e-cigarettes by young people increases their risk of using traditional cigarettes. We must do all we can to stop this disturbing trend before it turns another generation into lifelong tobacco addicts.

While the body of research on e-cigarettes is growing, the association maintains that it is far from complete. We agree with the National Academies that the jury is still out on the benefits and harmful effects of e-cigarettes, especially in the long-term. Until we have sufficient scientific data, we must have strong FDA regulation of these products and any new versions that come on the market.  

As always, the association will remain vigilant of e-cigarettes and their public health impact and continue our fight to eradicate all tobacco use in our nation.” 

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About the American Heart Association  

The American Heart Association is devoted to saving people from heart disease and stroke – the two leading causes of death in the world. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat these diseases. The Dallas-based association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. To learn more or to get involved, call 1-800-AHA-USA1, visit heart.org or call any of our offices around the country. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

About the American Stroke Association 

The American Stroke Association is devoted to saving people from stroke — the No. 2 cause of death in the world and a leading cause of serious disability. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat stroke. The Dallas-based association officially launched in 1998 as a division of the American Heart Association. To learn more or to get involved, call 1-888-4STROKE or visit StrokeAssociation.org. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association receives funding mostly from individuals. Foundations and corporations donate as well, and fund specific programs and events. Strict policies are enforced to prevent these relationships from influencing the Association's science content. Financial information for the American Heart Association, including a list of contributions from pharmaceutical companies and device manufacturers, is available at http://www.heart.org/corporatefunding

For Media Inquiries:  

Retha Sherrod: retha.sherrod@heart.org, 202-785-7929

For Public Inquiries: (800) AHA-USA1 (242-8721) 

heart.org and strokeassociation.org