More Toxins are still present in Electronic Cigarettes

By Dr. Alan Kadish NMD

After all the news and changes in the tobacco/nicotine addiction industry we should be wondering how is this a safer alternative to actual smoking ?  A study at John Hopkins University analysed the contents of the e-cigarette liquids and found toxic levels of 5 metals. Three of the brands alone constitute 71 % of the market and all brands contained the toxins.

It turns out that the toxic metals come from the heating elements. It certainly takes only common sense to consider that the exposure to cadmium, chromium, lead, manganese and nickel are far away from either safe or a good idea. But why stop there … did you know that additional liquids in the mix include propylene glycol  (anti-freeze). Why would you inhale this poo pourri of both toxic metals, nicotine and other flavoring agents ?

What’s additionally disturbing is the increased use among high school students which increased  900 percent between 2011 and 2015. The real problem is that during these formative years the brain, kidneys and nervous system are still developing and can ill afford the toxic insults from the toxic metals. The nickel in the amounts found was 100’s of time the levels that cause cancer.

But let’s not stop there. In another study 26% of teens who have used e-cigarettes have also tried “dripping” the e–liquids from the cigarettes directly onto the toxic heating coils. The rationale is to produce a  thicker clouds of vapor. Let see more exposure to the cause of the toxic metals……. hmmmmm bad idea.

Speaking of regulations, the FDA require the manufacturers to submit an ingredient list and get ready for this they also have to detail information about “potentially harmful ingredients”, including four of the five metals analyzed in this study — So they know what’s present and yet no labeling requirements…..

I think we need to really consider the impact of having youngsters exposed to carcinogens and toxic metals no different that what we do with water in the schools or jewelry or their toys. Time for a change in attitude and regulations. 

If you’re addicted to nicotine call us and let’s discuss how to break a health crippling addiction. Don’t delude yourself thinking that vaping is the better alternative. Center of Health 541.773.3191


Thank you to Lindsay Fox for a great photo……

Toxic Metals Found in E-Cigarette Liquids

Tue, 02/07/2017 – 10:30am

by Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health

A study led by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health found high levels of toxic metals in the liquid that creates the aerosol that e-cigarette users inhale when they vape.

The study, believed to be the first to examine a cross-section of metals in multiple e-cigarette brands, analyzed the liquid in five brands of first generation e-cigarettes for cadmium, chromium, lead, manganese and nickel. The liquid is the component of e-cigarettes that, when heated, delivers ingredients, often including nicotine and flavors, to the user. In first generation e-cigarettes, the liquid is stored in the cartridge in close contact with the heating coil. The researchers found all five heavy metals – which can be toxic or carcinogenic when inhaled — in all five brands, though levels varied by brand. The main source of the metals, the researchers believe, is the coil that heats the liquid that creates the aerosol, which is often but erroneously referred to as vapor. The study did not look at the possible presence of metals in e-cigarette aerosol.

The findings appear in the January issue of the journal Environmental Research.

“We do not know if these levels are dangerous, but their presence is troubling and could mean that the metals end up in the aerosol that e-cigarette users inhale,” says study leader Ana María Rule, PhD, MHS, an assistant scientist in the Bloomberg School’s Department of Environmental Health and Engineering. “One of the things that is troubling is that the metals in e-cigarette coils, which heat the liquid that creates the aerosol, are toxic when inhaled, so perhaps regulators might want to look into an alternative material for e-cigarette heating coils.”

The Food and Drug Administration began regulating e-cigarettes last year, but has not yet issued warnings. E-cigarettes may be less harmful than cigarettes for current smokers who switch completely to electronic cigarettes. A serious concern is the appeal of e-cigarettes to young people who have never smoked, since e-cigarettes might be habit forming, and might not be totally safe as emerging research shows that nicotine can adversely affect the developing adolescent brain. Last fall, then-U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy called e-cigarette use by young people a serious concern. E-cigarette use among high school students jumped 900 percent between 2011 and 2015.

For their study, the researchers selected five leading brands of so-called first generation e-cigarettes, which are referred to as cig-a-likes because they resemble traditional cigarettes. (Newer ones look like small cassette recorders with a mouthpiece. In the newer devices the liquid is added from a dispenser prior to use. In contrast, the liquid in first generation e-cigs is stored in the cartridge together with the coil, which increases the liquid’s exposure to the coil even in the absence of heating.) The five brands are sold across the United States in big-box retail stores, convenience stores and gas stations, as well as online. Three of the five brands constituted 71 percent of total market share in 2015. If a brand came in more than one flavor, the researchers chose one flavor for consistency’s sake.

To test the liquid for metal levels, the researchers extracted samples of the liquid; the liquid had not been heated by the coil prior to extraction. The liquid is a mixture of propylene glycol, glycerin, nicotine and flavorings. Because liquid volume varied considerably from brand to brand, the research team tested for concentrations of metals in micrograms per liter.

The five metals — cadmium, chromium, lead, manganese and nickel — were present in all five brands, with cadmium markedly lower than the other metals and with a considerable range of concentrations among the brands. For instance, one brand had a high concentration of all five metals. In that brand, the concentration of nickel, which is considered the most serious carcinogen when inhaled, was 22,600 micrograms per liter, 400 times that of the brand with the lowest concentration of nickel. In that same brand, the one with the highest concentration of all five metals, the concentration of manganese was 690 micrograms per liter, or 240 times that of the lowest concentration in yet another brand.

“It was striking, the varying degrees to which the metals were present in the liquid,” Rule says. “This suggests that the FDA should consider regulating the quality control of e-cigarette devices along with the ingredients found in e-cigarette liquids.”

For now, FDA regulations require e-cigarette makers to submit ingredient lists as well as information about potentially harmful ingredients, including four of the five metals analyzed in this study — nickel, lead, chromium and cadmium. The FDA has yet to issue proposed regulations on e-cigarette labeling. In addition to the coil, the researchers believe some of the metals may come from the components of the e-cigarette device or the manufacturing process.

This study was funded by the Institute for Global Tobacco Control, Johns Hopkins School of Public Health; National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Training Grant T32ES007141-31A1; National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism Training Grant T32-AA014125 and the Alfonso Martín Escudero Foundation.

Catherine Ann Hess, Pablo Olmedo, Ana Navas-Acien, Walter Goessler, Joanna E. Cohen, Ana Maria Rule. E-cigarettes as a source of toxic and potentially carcinogenic metals. Environmental Research, 2017; 152: 221 DOI: 10.1016/j.envres.2016.09.026

Study finds 1 in 4 teens who have used e-cigarettes have tried dripping e-liquids, potentially increasing exposure to toxins

American Academy of Pediatrics News

A new study found a quarter of teens who have used electronic cigarettes (e–cigarettes) tried “dripping” e–liquids directly onto the heating coils for thicker clouds of vapor, a practice with possible health risks.

For the study in the journal Pediatrics, “E–Cigarettes and`Dripping’ Among High–School Youth,” (published online Feb. 6), researchers surveyed 7,045 students at eight Connecticut high schools. Among the 1,080 respondents who had ever used e–cigarettes, more than 26 percent had used e–cigarettes for dripping. Reasons cited for dripping included producing thicker clouds of vapor (64 percent), better flavor (39 percent), a stronger throat hit (28 percent) and others such as curiosity (22 percent).

While currently there is no evidence of harmful effects beyond those associated with e–cigarettes in general, study authors said, other existing research suggests that dripping liquid nicotine directly onto the devices’ atomizers can expose users to high temperatures and toxic chemicals like formaldehyde, acetaldehyde and acetone in the vapors, and to higher levels of nicotine if the e–liquid used contains nicotine.

Especially as e–cigarettes become more popular among youth, they said, there remains a “critical need” to better understand potential health risks from the devices, including the risks produced by variations of use such as dripping.

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Dr. Kadish is an unusual physician often referred to as a "doctor detective". His expertise is the evaluation and treatment of complex disorders, typically after other physicians have been stumped, is renowned. He provides care for all family members and has additional training in autistic spectrum disorders and chronic complex diseases.