Sunday, 16 December, 2018

FDA: Teen Vaping Is An Epidemic

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Delores Daniels | 21 September, 2018, 10:37

The US Food and Drug Administration said last week it is considering a ban on e-cigarettes, which use fruit or candy-flavored nicotine liquids that may appeal to kids.

The need for this aggressive approach, Center for Tobacco Products Director Mitch Zeller said, is due to the fact that while young people may never consider smoking a cigarette, "about 80% of youth see no problem in the use of e-cigarettes".

USA health officials are sounding the alarm about teenage use of e-cigarettes, calling the problem an "epidemic" and ordering manufacturers to reverse the trend or risk having their flavored vaping products pulled from the market. In a nutshell: He's highly concerned about their growing popularity among youth.

The US Food and Drug Administration is launching its biggest-ever enforcement campaign, following concerns that e-cigarettes are being advertised to children. But health officials have warned nicotine in e-cigarettes is harmful to developing brains. But there is little research on e-cigarettes' long-term effects, including whether they help smokers quit. "And we are committed", said Gould.

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The new campaign is an extension of the The Real Cost Youth E-Cigarette Prevention Campaign, which the FDA says is a almost $60 million effort funded by fees from the tobacco industry.

"If a crackdown reduces the number of smokers switching to e-cigs, it would likely be bad for public health but financially a benefit for public tobacco companies", he later wrote in an email. With limited data, it can be hard to predict where this trend is going and what's driving it. But a year ago Gottlieb delayed the deadline until 2022, saying both the agency and industry needed more time to prepare. However, experts noted that the CDC survey didn't ask specifically about Juul, which by some estimates accounts for 70 percent of US e-cigarette sales.

The FDA is giving the five largest e-cigarette makers - Juul, Vuse, Blu, MarkTen XL and Logic - 60 days to submit plans to curb sales of their products to underage consumers.

If the plans fall short, the FDA could block sales of the products by enforcing a requirement that companies provide detailed design and health data about their products before marketing them.

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"I am not in disagreement with taking it away from kids, but I honestly feel that the e-cigarette industry is making a lot of money and taking a lot of money from big tobacco and cigarette companies, so now they want to make a change", he said.

Gottlieb said the FDA, which can regulate e-cigarettes but has not exercised this full power yet, would explore ways to make tobacco products less toxic, less addictive and less appealing.

This summer, the FDA sent warning letters to 1,300 e-cigarette retailers and manufacturers after an "undercover blitz" revealed many were illegally selling to minors.

Vaping was conceived as a way to help adult smokers quit by providing a nicotine fix without the carcinogenic properties of smoking.

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If the FDA pulls flavored devices from the shelves, Mr. Gates said, he believes most of his customers would switch back to cigarettes.

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