A recent article published in Tobacco Control estimates that up to 6.6 million premature deaths could be prevented, which would equate to 86.7 million years of life saved, if current smokers in the U.S. switched to vaping.
Dr David Levy, at Georgetown University Medical Center in Washington DC, ran two scenarios in his study; an optimistic study where smoking falls to 5% over the next 10 years and a pessimistic study where it falls to 10%. This study explored what would happen if large numbers of cigarette smokers switched to e-cigarettes and vaping.
In the optimistic study, the Researchers used similar patterns of vaping use and currently published evaluations of likely harm reduction. Where smoking was reduced to 5% across the United States, 6.6 million fewer premature deaths would occur, and 86.7 million years of life would be saved. This is an amazing real world study; saving tens of millions of years of life across a country.
In the pessimistic study, the researchers repeated the results in a ‘worst case’ scenario. In this scenario, more young people initiated e-cigarette use and the risks of e-cigarettes (vaping) are on the higher end of suggested estimates. Even in this worst case scenario, its estimated by researchers that 1.6 million premature deaths would be averted, and 20.8 million fewer life years lost.
The most fascinating thing about this study is that it does not even dive into the damage and disease caused by secondhand smoke, decline in health, and increased disability that many smokers experience in the years before death. With this additional information the benefits of e-cigarettes versus traditional cigarettes are even greater.
The aim of the research is to ‘help the (US) Surgeon General and the Public Health Community develop a strategy to reach the ‘endgame’ for cigarette smoking’. Could you imagine a smoke-free America? Where vaping and e-cigarettes have completely abolished smoking in the United States? Where there would be no secondhand smoke illnesses, no more dirty cigarette butts on our sidewalks, and no more stinky cigarette smoke lingering in the air.
In additional commentary provided by Dr Marita Hefler from the Menzies School of Health Research in Australia, she suggests it’s time to consider banning the sale of combustible tobacco products. Until e-cigarettes, no other products could match the efficiency of nicotine delivery. Without vaping as an alternative, an overall ban would be a non-viable option. Dr Hefler states that the ongoing availability of combustible tobacco products is an “historical anomaly” as it is a legal consumer product that kills 2/3 of its users; an unfathomable deviation from consumer safety regulations.
Dr. Hefler concludes, “The new continuum of nicotine products presents and opportunity to end the exceptionalism of combustible tobacco, and allow the most dangerous end of the nicotine product continuum to be rapidly, and completely phased out.”
What a great opportunity we have with vaping products! Eradicate smoking completely and save tens of millions of lives. We hope that our politicians and government agencies will listen to reason and not attempt to ban this life saving alternative to cigarettes. Cigarettes are called cancer sticks for a reason; they give you cancer and cause death. Every smoker-turned-vaper is a huge net-positive resulting in longer lives, fewer health conditions, and a healthier society for everyone.
Link to Study can be found here.
Link to Commentary can be found here.