Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Judge overrules FDA on e-cigs

A federal judge ordered the FDA to stop blocking the import of electronic cigarettes (e-cigs) from China. A statement from the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids said, 

"In ruling today that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration may not regulate electronic cigarettes as drugs or medical devices, U.S. District Judge Richard Leon has ignored decades of precedent and put America's consumers at unnecessary risk." 
This statement couldn't be more true. Electronic cigarettes are not being marketed as tobacco products they are being marketed as cessation devices or as some sort of healthier alternative to smoking. At any rate- these products have not been proven to be safe or effective. If you say a product is a cessation device it is a drug. If you say this is a healthier alternative it is a medical device. E-cig manufacturers are capitalizing on a legal quagmire of not really medical, not really tobacco, and not really a drug. Moreover, e-cig manufacturers have actively tried to circumvent smoke-free air laws by saying the product's vapor is harmless. The evidence is lacking and the public is at risk as a result. The FDA will eventually be able to regulate e-cigs under their regulatory authority over tobacco. Despite the e-cig manufacturers contention that their products do not contain tobacco, the FDA clearly feels otherwise.  
All across Wisconsin we saw these mall kiosks pop-up during the holiday season. At these kiosks were aggressive salespeople selling a product which is not proven to be safe and not proven to be an effective method to quit. Hopefully this ruling gets overturned and the government with side with public health. 

3 comments:

how to ollie said...

Excellent post and writing style. Bookmarked.

John Richards said...

Erich. You’re anti e-cig propaganda continues to amaze me. You apparently know a tiny bit about electronic cigarettes, and your judgment is obviously clouded. I no longer use tobacco, because I have switched to a personal vaporizer. It’s clear that you’ve still not taken any time to seek out the opinions and experiences of anyone who uses an electronic cigarette. I am an adult Erich. I am 44 years old. I have plenty of money, and you obviously do not understand that I will go back to smoking tobacco cigarettes if the government takes away my e-cigs, or the nicotine fluid I use. Is that truly what you want? Why do you want me to smoke cigarettes?
I have easily connected with hundreds of people who have replaced tobacco cigarettes with vaporizers, and there are thousands and thousands more. If you have done any research, you know that the products work, that many of the people using them have stopped using tobacco completely, and that this has been going on for around three years in the U.S. with no record of any medical harm.
I would like you to say it out loud, to my face Erich. I would like you to look me in the eye and say, “John, we’re going to get these electronic cigarettes banned, so that you can go back to Camel Lights.”
Please open your mind to those of us who are trying to make America, and Wisconsin, smoke free, by making ourselves smoke free. I have been smoke free for more than two months, and I can’t understand why you’re against this.

Erich said...

John,
At SFW we are most concerned about the safety of E-cigarettes as has been referenced many times on this blog. Quitting smoking cigarettes to begin using e- cigarettes is not something we can support. These products have not been proven to be "better" or "healthier." The safety of these products are unknown, they vary widely in quality. Those who are struggling with nicotine addiction are still addicted to nicotine if they are using e-cigarettes- just as you have indicated. Our goals are to prevent the initiation of smoking, especially among our young people. We also want to expose the lies that Big Tobacco has been putting out there for far too long.