Three of the latest, stupidest, most dangerous vaping myths totally debunked
It seems like every day a new anti-vaping conspiracy surfaces on social media. The barrage of negativity surrounding accusations that “vaping causes heart attacks” to allegations that teen vaping is a national “epidemic” is causing overwhelming confusion in the general population. In fact, according to a recent poll conducted by the Georgia State University Tobacco Center of Regulatory Science (GSU-TCR), 45 percent of Americans now wrongly believe that vaping is just as deadly as smoking.
Here are three of the latest, most ridiculous vaping myths (and the science that debunks them) that are grossly misinforming the American People about the live-saving benefits of vaping.
DEBUNKED: Vaping causes heart attacks.
The notorious junk scientist, vaping hater, and accused sexual predator Staunton Glantz recently published a paper in the Journal of the American Heart Association which claims that "e-cigarette use is an independent risk factor for having had a myocardial infarction." The anti-vaping activist groups – not bothering to determine if the scientific evidence was indeed valid – immediately began spreading the bogus lies across social media. Headlines claiming that “vaping causes heart attacks” began flooding mainstream media.
Within days, Dr. Brad Rodu, an expert tobacco analysist from the University of Louisville, thoroughly debunked the entire study by pointing out a singular but fatal flaw in Glantz’s analytical processes. In a letter to the American Heart Association, Rodu explains why the Glantz publication is inaccurate and demands an immediate retraction.
Related Article: Brad Rodu completely annihilates ‘vaping causes heart attacks’ study
According to Rodu, in nearly every example cited by Glatz of vapers having heart attacks, the cardiac episodes actually occurred several years before the patients ever began vaping. To quote Mr. Rodu’s letter, “In fact, the majority of the 38 current e-cigarette users were first told that they had a heart attack many years before they first started using e-cigarettes. In this group, the heart attacks preceded first e-cigarette use by almost a decade on average.”
DEBUNKED: Teen vaping is a national ‘epidemic.’
In an interview with Brent Stafford of Regulator Watch, world-class epidemiologist Dr. Raymond Niaura of the New York University College of Global Public Health discusses the issue of teen vaping as a national “epidemic.” The conspiracy theory began with a press release in September 2018 where the then-FDA Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb announced “new steps to address [the] epidemic of youth e-cigarette use.”
In his subsequent mainstream media interviews shortly thereafter, Gottlieb then began claiming that FDA statistics identified an “80 percent rise in teen vaping” for the year 2018. That’s all that was needed for mainstream media to pick up the story and run with it. Within hours, the social media buzz around the story was, in itself, truly epidemic.
However, Dr. Niaura states in his interview that the current statistics simply do not support these claims. Furthermore, he mentions, Gottlieb and the FDA refused to make publicly available the original data that allegedly supported the 80” rise theory. Niaura further states that the term “epidemic” is typically reserved for outbreaks of terminal diseases like yellow fever or the current Ebola virus scare occurring in the Congo. Applying the term to teen vaping is inappropriate, at best, or intentionally misleading, at worst.
Related Article: Renowned epidemiologist debunks FDA claims of teen vaping ‘epidemic’
According to recently published data compiled by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Niaura continues, the FDA seems to be essentially cherry-picking the statistics that best fit their anti-vaping argument. The CDC-published National Youth Tobacco Survey (NYTS) of 2017 and 2018 indicates that less than 3.4 percent of teenagers surveyed self-identify as frequent vapers.
The only category that experienced an 80 percent increase was 30-day users – or teenagers who reported to have used a vape product at least once in the prior month. In other words, teens who may have experimented with vaping (rather than smoking) are on the rise - but not daily vapers. Meanwhile national statistics on teen smoking rates are at all-time lows.
DEBUNKED: Vaping is just as deadly as smoking.
Just because vaping devices produce a white plume of gaseous vapor that looks very much like tobacco smoke does not automatically mean that both vaping and smoking are equally hazardous to one’s health. As silly as this thought process may seem, that’s what 45 percent of Americans now mistakenly believe according to the GSU-TCR report entitled Changing Perceptions of Harm of e-Cigarette vs Cigarette Use Among Adults in 2 US National Surveys From 2012 to 2017 (JAMA).
However, according to the National Academies of Sciences Engineering and Medicine, the American Cancer Society, and multiple other public health organizations and non-profits, smokers who switch completely to vaping experience diminished risks of heart disease, cancer, respiratory disorders, and smoking-related death.
Furthermore, the U.K.’s premier public health organization Public Health England released documented evidence as far back as 2015 which indicates that vaping is approximately 95 percent less harmful than smoking. In the United States, however, public health agencies like the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) still refuse to acknowledge that the UK study even exists.
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