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      E-Cigarettes: Prevalence and Attitudes in Great Britain

      , BA , 1 , , BSc 2 , , PhD 3 , , PhD 4

      Nicotine & Tobacco Research

      Oxford University Press

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          Electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) are a means of recreational nicotine use that can potentially eliminate the need to smoke tobacco. Little is known about the prevalence of use or smokers’ attitudes toward e-cigarettes. This study describes use of and attitudes toward e-cigarettes in Britain.


          Respondents from three surveys were recruited from a panel of adults in Britain. Preliminary online and face-to-face qualitative research informed the development of a smokers’ survey (486 smokers who had used e-cigarettes and 894 smokers who had not). Representative samples of adults in Britain were then constructed from the panel for population surveys in 2010 (12,597 adults, including 2,297 smokers) and 2012 (12,432 adults, including 2,093 smokers), generating estimates of the prevalence of e-cigarette use and trial in Great Britain.


          Awareness, trial, and current use increased between 2010 and 2012; for example, current use more than doubled from 2.7% of smokers in 2010 to 6.7% in 2012. The proportion of ever-users currently using e-cigarettes was around one-third in both years. In 2012, 1.1% of ex-smokers reported current e-cigarette use, and a further 2.7% reported past use. Approximately 0.5% of never-smokers reported having tried e-cigarettes.


          While we found evidence supporting the view that e-cigarette use may be a bridge to quitting, we found very little evidence of e-cigarette use among adults who had never smoked. British smokers would benefit from information about the effective use, risks, and benefits of e-cigarettes, as this might enable the use of e-cigarettes to improve public health.

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          Most cited references 13

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          Electronic nicotine delivery systems: adult use and awareness of the 'e-cigarette' in the USA.

          Electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS), also referred to as electronic cigarettes or e-cigarettes, were introduced into the US market in 2007. Despite concerns regarding the long-term health impact of this product, there is little known about awareness and use of ENDS among adults in the USA. A consumer-based mail-in survey (ConsumerStyles) was completed by 10,587 adults (≥ 18 years) in 2009 and 10,328 adults in 2010. Data from these surveys were used to monitor awareness, ever use and past month use of ENDS from 2009 to 2010 and to assess demographic characteristics and tobacco use of ENDS users. In this US sample, awareness of ENDS doubled from 16.4% in 2009 to 32.2% in 2010 and ever use more than quadrupled from 2009 (0.6%) to 2010 (2.7%). Ever use of ENDS was most common among women and those with lower education, although these were not the groups who had heard of ENDS most often. Current smokers and tobacco users were most likely to try ENDS. However, current smokers who had tried ENDS did not say they planned to quit smoking more often than smokers who had never tried them. Given the large increase in awareness and ever use of ENDS during this 1-year period and the unknown impact of ENDS use on cigarette smoking behaviours and long-term health, continued monitoring of these products is needed.
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            Does Mode Matter For Modeling Political Choice? Evidence From the 2005 British Election Study

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              The emerging phenomenon of electronic cigarettes.

              The need for novel and more effective approaches to tobacco control is unquestionable. The electronic cigarette is a battery-powered electronic nicotine delivery system that looks very similar to a conventional cigarette and is capable of emulating smoking, but without the combustion products accountable for smoking's damaging effects. Smokers who decide to switch to electronic cigarettes instead of continuing to smoke would achieve large health gains. The electronic cigarette is an emerging phenomenon that is becoming increasingly popular with smokers worldwide. Users report buying them to help quit smoking, to reduce cigarette consumption, to relieve tobacco withdrawal symptoms due to workplace smoking restrictions and to continue to have a 'smoking' experience but with reduced health risks. The focus of the present article is the health effects of using electronic cigarettes, with consideration given to the acceptability, safety and effectiveness of this product to serve as a long-term substitute for smoking or as a tool for smoking cessation.

                Author and article information

                Nicotine Tob Res
                Nicotine Tob. Res
                Nicotine & Tobacco Research
                Oxford University Press (UK )
                October 2013
                23 May 2013
                23 May 2013
                : 15
                : 10
                : 1737-1744
                1Action on Smoking and Health , London, UK;
                2Centre for Population Health Sciences, University of Edinburgh Medical School , UK;
                3UK Centre for Tobacco Control Studies, Stirling Management School, University of Stirling , UK;
                4UK Centre for Tobacco Control Studies, National Addiction Centre, Institute of Psychiatry , King’s College London , London, UK
                Author notes
                Corresponding Author: Martin Dockrell, B.A., Action on Smoking and Health, New House, Hatton Garden, London, EC1N 8JY, UK. Telephone: +44 (0)20 7404 0850; E-mail: martin.dockrell@ 123456ash.org.uk
                © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco.

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs license ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/), which permits non-commercial reproduction and distribution of the work, in any medium, provided the original work is not altered or transformed in any way, and that the work is properly cited. For commercial reuse, please contact journals.permissions@oup.com

                Page count
                Pages: 8
                Original Investigation



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