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Liquids from e-cigarettes can be detrimental to health

 “Smoking” of e-cigarettes results in the evaporation of so-called liquids, which represent solutions of certain ingredients. The liquid is heated by means of a battery-operated mechanism, which allows to inhale the vapour. The users of e-cigarettes can either replace the liquid-filled cartridges or refill them by their own. Little is known about the ingredients of the liquids. The Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR) has assessed typical ingredients regarding of their health effects.

Smokers of e-cigarettes do not inhale the characteristic carcinogenic combustion products and substances known to be present in tobacco smoke. Nevertheless, e-cigarettes can not considered safe with respect to health effects. An important risk factor is posed by inhaling nicotine. Some pharmacological effects of nicotine – such as increased blood pressure and accelerated heart frequency, excessive production of gastric acid, increased adrenaline release – are often discussed as being associated with chronic diseases. In the future but not yet it might be possible to reliably assess the long-term health effects of e-cigarettes. Another possible risk factor of e-cigarettes is acute nicotine poisoning in adults through excessive use of e-cigarettes or in children as a result of incautious handling of the liquids (e.g. swallowing).

The Federal Institute for Risk Assessment, Germany
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