Health Canada warns against 'e-cigarettes'..

March 30, 2009 - Health Canada is warning Canadians not to buy or use electronic smoking products, dubbed e-cigarettes. The agency says the products have not been fully evaluated for safety, quality and efficacy and could pose a health risk.

Health Canada says that anyone selling, importing, or advertising electronic cigarette products in Canada "must stop doing so immediately." It's advising those Canadians who have used e-cigarette products and are concerned about their health to consult with a health care practitioner.

In the U.S. New Jersey Senator Frank R. Lautenberg is asking the government to prevent the sale of so-called "electronic cigarettes" until more is known about them.

E-cigarette manufacturers say their products deliver nicotine without the tobacco and chemical additives that are linked to cancer and other health problems. But Health Canada says they may do nothing to help a smoker quit the nicotine habit.
"Although these electronic smoking products may be marketed as a safer alternative to conventional tobacco products and, in some cases, as an aid to quitting smoking, electronic smoking products may pose risks such as nicotine poisoning and addiction," the agency says in an alert.

"Nicotine is hazardous to the health and safety of certain segments of the population such as children, youth, pregnant women, nursing mothers, people with heart conditions, and the elderly," the agency adds.

E-Cigarettes Lack Evidence of Health Benefits..

Health Canada reminds that it has authorized the sale of a number of legal smoking cessation aids, including nicotine gum, nicotine patches, nicotine inhaler, and nicotine lozenges.

Reference: Health Canada warns against 'e-cigarettes', News Staff, 3/27/2009.