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New study shows why FDA wants to ban vaping: E-cigs are 2x more effective than Big Pharma NRTs

E-cigarettes are nearly twice as effective in helping smokers quit compared to conventional nicotine replacement therapies (NRTs) like patches, gums, and lozenges, says a new study.  Conducted in accordance with the National Institute for Health Research, Health Technology Assessment Programme and Cancer Research UK, the project began with a simple premise.  If the average middle-age smoker was given all available options of smoking cessation products for free, which ones would they choose, and which ones would be the most successful.

Scientists from London’s Queen Mary University conducted the experiment by first selecting a random group of 886 participants who were already attending smoking cessation clinics endorsed by the UK’s National Health Service.  This preliminary criterion is important because – unlike many previously published “studies” - the researchers only selected participates who actually wanted to quit smoking. 

Because. let’s be honest.  If you don’t want to quit smoking, then no amount of e-cigs or nicotine chewing gum is going to help, right?

Why FDA’s Gottlieb will ignore this UK vaping study

The nearly 900 smokers were divided into two groups: Vapers and non-vapers.  The vaping participants were given a second-generation vaping device and some e-liquid.  The non-vaping group was allowed to choose from between any available NRT imaginable.  They could even switch back-and-forth between several different options over the course of the study if they wanted to.  Both groups were also provided professional behavioral counseling.

The randomized trial lasted for a full 52-weeks, and the participants were evaluated intermittently every 90-days.  The scientists even conducted specialized biochemical testing to ensure that all participants regardless of their grouping classification were remaining smoke-free. 

Related Article:  Royal Society of Public Health: Vaping nicotine ‘no more harmful’ than caffeine

Of the 886 who underwent randomization, 9.9 percent of the non-vaping participants using the conventional NRTs remained smoke-free after 1-year.  The vaping group, however, scored a whopping 18.0 percent success rate in comparison.  The findings of the UK study are published in a report entitled A Randomized Trial of E-Cigarettes versus Nicotine-Replacement Therapy and published in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM).

Belinda Borrelli of the Center for Behavioral Science Research at Boston University told the UPI.

"It is the first study to use the newest form of e-cigarette in a long-term trial, and compare it to FDA-approved nicotine replacement therapy in a randomized trial…Other strengths of the study include biochemical verification of smoking outcomes -- the nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) arm had a choice of products (gum, patch, etc) and could switch between them if they wanted, the e-cig arm had a choice of e-liquids, and it was a pragmatic trial conducted in a real-world setting."

While the results of the UK vaping study may be no surprise to veteran vapers, the FDA and its Commissioner Scott Gottlieb should pay particularly close attention to this particular study.  Before he was appointed to his position by Donald Trump, Dr. Gottlieb had been a seated member of the boards of directors of at least five major pharmaceutical companies.   And it’s these Big Pharma conglomerates like GlaxoSmithKline and Johnson & Johnson which hold the patents on these nicotine patches, gums, lozenges, and other NRTs.

If Gottlieb bans vaping nationwide, then NRTs will once again become popular even though they don’t work for most smokers trying to quit.  And Gottlieb’s Big Pharma Buddies will be laughing all the way to the bank.

Related Article:  Is this a joke? Is FDA promoting teen drug dependency as solution to teen vaping?

(Image courtesy of Shutterstock)

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