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Toxic metals found in e-cig vapors

Original source: https://pennstatehershey.netreturns.biz/HealthInfo/Story.aspx?StoryId=7adab195-50cd-43f0-b5bc-a2dd83e3109d#.W5qEK5NKhYg

If you vape, you may be getting more than you bargained for. A new study shows that significant amounts of some metals appear to transfer from some e-cigarette devices into the e-liquid—and from the e-liquid into the vapor inhaled by users.

Breathing in these metals on a regular basis has been tied to a variety of serious health problems.

 

 

How metals reach your lungs

In a typical e-cigarette, an electrical current from a battery passes through a metal coil. That coil then heats e-liquid to create an aerosol. It’s that aerosol that’s inhaled, or “vaped.”

A few studies have detected some toxic metals in e-liquid and in the aerosol produced by e-cigarettes. But this new study found much larger amounts in e-liquids that had been exposed to heating coils—making the coils the most likely suspect for the contamination. More alarming, those metals then contaminated the aerosols inhaled by users.

The metals that researchers found included lead, chromium, nickel and manganese. Regularly breathing these metals has been associated with damage to the lungs, kidneys, liver, cardiovascular and neurological systems—and even with some cancers.

You can read more about the study in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.

The future of e-cigs

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has the authority to regulate e-cigarettes. For now, the agency has not decided how it will do so. This new study about metals may impact the focus of FDA’s regulations in the future.

A recent congressional report outlined the dangers of vaping. It noted that e-cigs are probably less harmful than traditional cigarettes. However, vaping can be a gateway to tobacco addiction. And there’s strong evidence that teens who vape are more likely to start smoking. E-cigarettes are still fairly new. That means their long-term safety is still unknown.

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