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E-Cigarette Injuries Rise, U.S. Statistics Suggest

Update Date: Apr 17, 2014 09:32 AM EDT

According to the latest United States data, injuries related to e-cigarettes may have risen. The data revealed that even through these injuries, ranging from nicotine toxicity to respiratory complications, have increased, the product's popularity continues to soar.

From 2010 to 2011, the number of people who used e-cigarettes doubled to around 21 percent. Despite the growing popularity of this product, data suggests that injuries have increased over the past few years. In this report, the researchers examined the number of complaints that were filed from March 2013 to March 2014 to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). During that time period, there were over 50 complaints, which is equivalent to the total amount of complaints that were filed over the past five years.

The complaints included headache, dizziness, sore throat, cough, nosebleeds, trouble breathing, chest pain or heart problems. Some people had suffered from allergic reactions, such as itchiness and swelling.

The researchers cautioned that the data does not clearly indicate that the rate of injuries caused by e-cigarettes has risen. The total number of e-cigarette related injuries could be greatly underreported. However, the researchers noted that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has also reported a spike in the number of calls made to poison control centers related to e-cigarettes

"Both together does suggest there are more instances going on," David Ashley, director of the office of science at the FDA's tobacco division said according to Reuters.

E-cigarettes, which are currently not regulated, initially gained popularity as an alternative and safe way of smoking. People also used e-cigarettes or other "vaping" products to help them quit smoking. However, based on new studies, many researchers believe that e-cigarettes are not safe to use and they are not effective in getting people to quit the habit.

"Some evidence suggests that e-cigarette use may facilitate smoking cessation, but definitive data are lacking," Dr. Priscilla Callahan-Lyon of the FDA's Center for Tobacco Products wrote.

Due to new research, the FDA is on its way to regulate e-cigarettes and other vaping products for the first time ever.

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