Even though an e-cigarette can now be marketed as a smoking cessation aid, that’s not an endorsement by the FDA, Elizabeth Tracey reports


One brand of electronic cigarette can now be marketed to help people quit smoking combustible cigarettes, the FDA has decided. Michael Blaha, a cardiologist at Johns Hopkins and antismoking activist, says this does not mean the agency is advocating for use of this produce.

Blaha: I want to emphasize that the FDA has not endorsed this as a smoking cessation product. This decision only reflects the authorization of marketing of this product. Only nicotine replacement products, and pharmaceuticals like Chantix for example are approved for smoking cessation. The implications of this decision are complicated and won’t be known probably for a few years. But I think the FDA is making the decision that by authorizing a particular tobacco product for example they can also deny all the applications for flavored tobacco products.  :30

Flavored tobacco products are well-known to appeal to young users, including children, and act as a gateway to nicotine addiction, Blaha says, so keeping them out of the market is a goal well worth supporting. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.