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New Study Finds Misconceptions About Electronic Cigarettes

A new study finds there are misconceptions about electronic cigarettes, or e-cigs, and what they can and cannot do for smokers. ABC News' senior medical correspondent, Dr. Timothy Johnson, explains.

It's called an electronic cigarette, e-cigarette (e-cig), or personal vaporizer (pv).

It even looks like a cigarette, only it holds a liquid solution that delivers only nicotine vapor to smokers and not the other harmful ingredients found in tobacco cigarettes.

Now, a study published in the American Journal of Public Health finds that many young Americans believe these cigarette substitutes may be more beneficial than they are.

Researchers analyzed data collected on the awareness and views of e-cigarettes held by more that 2,600 Midwestern adults aged 20-28.

The results showed nearly 70 percent of the participants were aware of e-cigs, and of that group, many (44.5%) thought e-cigs could help with quitting smoking. More than half (52.9%) of participants in the study believed e-cigs are less harmful than tobacco cigarettes, and some (26.4%) said they were less addictive.

But, researchers caution...not enough is known about the risks of e-cigs. Researchers also say there is insufficient evidence to support any benefits of e-cigs.

Published: Thursday, January 17, 2013

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