Dangers of e Cigs Electronic Cigarettes


Now, I know I know all the tobacco users out there are already rolling their eyes…or a cigarette.  In fact, I can see you through the screen with your addicted grin thinking to yourself: what is this quack going to talk about next? The dangers of teapots? Well, that will be a topic in the near future, but honestly this is something at least worth contemplating. Just like the recent boom in “legal high” products, e Cigs have taken a formidable portion of the tobacco market and transferred them over to the new safer vapor lifestyle. Sure it may be vapor and contain a hefty dose of nicotine, but has anyone ever questioned the safety of these products? What are the dangers of e Cigs? Because they largely go unregulated, e Cigs can have a multitude of chemicals that can remain unlisted on the label.

So the reason I even bring this article up is that I have a friend who also transitioned into the safer alternative, but he strangely developed a harsh, hoarse throat after using a few different brands of e Cigs. Now, he has been a smoker for  many years and has never experienced this amount of pain in the throat. I too, when I tried his e Cig, noticed it was significantly more harsh than the conventional cigarette. So what gives? I thought these things are supposed to be a safe alternative. How come my throat hurts even more than smoking a conventional cigarette? I sought out to find an answer because there has to be something I’m missing.

Nicotine 3DLet’s discuss the major reason why one would even want to smoke: nicotine. Our beloved molecule nicotine comes into the picture yet again. This time it is disguised in the vapor form and nobody is supposed to know the dangers of the chemical! Here are some of the complications one may encounter from just nicotine exposure:

  • Pure Toxicity – LD50 of .5-1.0mg/kg: This means that nicotine can easily kill an adult human weight 80kg (or 175lbs) with as little as a .4mg dose. However, thankfully it’s not a huge risk unless your really fiending and are using gum, patches and cigarettes at the same time. It is very poorly absorbed in the lungs.
  • Cancer – Naturally nicotine is a cancer causing agent. Though, it causes intoxication, it can also contribute to many forms of cancers.
  • Developmental problems (teratogenic) for Pregnant women – I mean this is written on the packaging by the Surgeon General. This goes without saying that nicotine can cause potential birth defects and pregnant women should abstain from any drug whatsoever.
  • Cerebellum Toxicity – The region of your brain known as the Cerebellum, responsible for motor control and coordination amongst a whole host of functions, is directly affected by nicotine and may pose toxicity to it. In other words, nicotine kills your brain.
  • Increased heart rate (tachycardia) – well…duh it’s a stimulant. This also goes without saying. The whole point of this drug is to get a rush. That’s what a rush feels like: fast heart rate, light lightheadedness and a slight euphoria.

Increase blood pressure – well…duh it’s a stimulant see above.

I’m not going into the psychoactive effects as those are pretty apparent. These are the noticeable affects of using nicotine. So that list above is simply the list for nicotine toxicity. We haven’t even touched the other chemicals in e Cigs. Already, one can see that regardless of one’s decision to smoke, or vape, it’s not the smoke or vapor as so much the active ingredient in the product. Again, the whole reason for smoking is to get a dose of nicotine. Many fail to realize that that same thing we are going after, is toxic in all of its delivery methods.

Enter the e Cig. Insert corny 1980s martial arts music. No seriously, though, now it’s time to consider the additional chemicals one is exposed to when vaping with e Cigs. the FDA did a preliminary analysis of the e Cigs cartridges to find that some of them contained tobacco-specific nitrosamines or TSNAs. These are known carcinogens. Let’s rank another 2 for carcinogenic. Some e Cigs also contain the toxin diethylene glycol which tastes sweet, is odorless and is very poisonous. The bad thing it’s toxicity level is low enough that e Cigs can administer enough to be harmful.

Finally, one the most reasonable dangers of e Cigs lies with the proposed health claims. Because it is perceived as less harmful, users may start smoking it more frequently and more regularly with longer sessions, thus inhaling more nicotine. Look, nicotine is addictive whether you are smoking it in a cigarette form or an e Cig form. It is addictive and that is the bottom line. This can adversely affect the proposed purpose of smoking cessation as more users may find this as an appropriate vehicle to get high with.

Obviously, if one is going to smoke, the dangers of e Cigs are much fewer than that of cigarette smoking, however it is not without danger. The advertising on these e Cigs claim that they are completely danger free and have absolutely no side effects and no issues in their use. Listen, they are still addictive, they are still destructive and the best option is to avoid anything containing nicotine. However, if one consciously decides to partake in the usage of  tobacco products, one must understand that e Cigs are not without hazards. They pose a significant amount of hazards on their own. It is safe to say, however, that e Cigs are the lesser of the two evils if you are deciding to smoke cigarettes or vape. The dangers of cigarettes far outweigh the dangers of e Cigs.

Edit 9/3/2013 Appearantly, these e Cigs can also explode in your face shooting flames 4 ft across the room! Who knew!  The brand that blew up in this woman’s face was an eHit. Yet another reason to avoid these products.

In case you are wondering, I took the liberty of taking the e Cig apart to show you how simple these things really are.

Inside an e Cig

  • Dave Smith

    duh….Nicotine does not cause cancer, but dozens of other chemicals found in tobacco products do, according to researcher Virginia Reichert, NP, and all other scientists.

    • SiteAdmin9


      Thanks for the comment. From what I’ve researched it seems that Nicotine in fact does have some carcinogenic properties to it. And consulting a nicotine specialist in the internet age seems to be a bit old school. Nonetheless, I have worked with Nicotine in the lab and it is extremely poisonous. According to the CDC it is this is confirmed: http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/ershdb/EmergencyResponseCard_29750028.html. And in this article I’m not advocating smoking cigarettes or smoking anything at all. If you read the article I state ” Obviously, if one is going to smoke, the dangers of e Cigs are much fewer than that of cigarette smoking, however it is not without danger.” This is implying that cigarettes are dangerous and eCigs are too! I am wondering where you get the conception that I can cause somebody’s death by advocating complete drug cessation… Either way thank you for your input, but please do check my facts. I believe you will find it quite compelling.

      • Dave Smith

        Oh come on!! Quit acting like you are writing a unbiased article I’m not sure what your agenda is, but from your bias it is easy to tell you have one. If you have worked with Nicotine, then you know the limits of it’s use, what amounts will kill someone, and that it is very addictive. It has not been proven either way whether eCigs are dangerous or not. I am sure they will find some dangers, but is anything safe?? Seriously, is it safe to eat chocolate, drink tea, coffee, soda???? eCigs are a much better alternative then real Cigs, that is truth. People considering their use over real Cigs should defiantly chose eCigs. That is the story you should be writing. It is very likely and statistically a absolute that someone who switches to eCigs today will be saved from may of the harmful and deadly effects of real Cigs.

        BTW, nowhere on the internet have I found where it is stated that nicotine is a carcinogenic, as a matter of fact, I have found many sources that state the opposite, that nicotine is NOT a carcinogenic. I just dislike that misinformation being put out as fact from stories such as this one.

        • SiteAdmin9


          Again, I appreciate your comments. Let me address a few things. What is my agenda? I am simply providing information. I am a simple consumer exposing the common risks of common products.

          Nicotine is extremely poisonous with an LD50 of .5-.1mg/kg. This means that about 30-60mg of nicotine can be enough to kill an adult human. Compare this to strychnine: LD50 1-2mg/kg. The only thing keeping you alive when smoking is that nicotine is poorly absorbed in our bloodstream so you don’t get close to a lethal dose.

          Where do you see the safety of eCigs listed? It’s not a regulated substance and therefore the ingredients are not to be known or trusted. This article is about eCigs, not chocolate, “drink tea”, coffee or soda so I am not discussing the dangers of other substances. I have an article about the dangers of soda here: http://www.dangerof.com/dangers-of-coke-and-cola-part-2/, but that is not apart of this discussion.

          Again, I never mention that eCigs are a bad alternative. I suggest and imply complete abstinence from any chemical substances. Is smoking anything really necessary? Sounds like you have an agenda… Why would you choose to use either ? I state in my article “Obviously, if one is going to smoke, the dangers of e Cigs are much fewer than that of cigarette smoking”. This is suggesting if you are going to smoke, then smoke an eCig. So I agree with you.

          However, why not quit altogether? No patches, no eCigs, no gum or any other nicotine alternative. Nicotine is not listed as a necessary nutrient and therefore the body can live without it. If you are addict, then perhaps you need help to quitting smoking altogether. Visit http://smokefree.gov/ for some help

          Nicotine has been suggested as a carcinogen ” Nicotine has been noted to directly cause cancer through a number of different mechanisms such as the activation of MAP Kinases. Link: http://www.wjgnet.com/1007-9327/full/v12/i46/7428.htm and Further, “nicotine also promotes cancer growth by stimulating angiogenesis and neovascularization. In one study, nicotine administered to mice with tumors caused increases in tumor size (twofold increase), metastasis (nine-fold increase), and tumor recurrence (threefold increase).N-Nitrosonornicotine (NNN), classified by the IARC as a Group 1 carcinogen, is produced endogenously from nitrite in saliva and nicotine.” http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0007524.

          Ok fine, if this is not convincing enough, perhaps the finding of TSNAs would be enough to deter you from eCig use. If that’s not enough, consider that eCig companies have no obligation to be honest. Who is regulating and overseeing the industry? The fact is, there is minimal oversight and virtually free reign for these companies to include whatever chemicals they want inside of these products. Consider the other products sold at tobacco stores that later come out as containing MDPV and other highly dangerous psychoactive chemicals.

          This is not misinformation, just read the article and do your own research. I understand the facts may surprise you, but that’s the whole point of the article. Furthermore, why do you defend Nicotine and eCigs so much? Are you a smoker?

          Dave, I sincerely appreciate your comments, but please don’t personally attack me. I’m not here to argue, just provide honest information.

          • Dave Smith

            I am not trying to attack you personally other then I believe you are misinforming people. I do appreciate you taking the time and answering me personally. My agenda is to get people to quit smoking. It is obvious that you have never smoked or you would not dismiss it as something someone can just quit by simply deciding to quit. It’s disingenuous to say “However, why not quit altogether? No patches, no eCigs, no gum or any other nicotine alternative. Nicotine is not listed as a necessary nutrient and therefore the body can live without it. If you are addict, then perhaps you need help to quitting smoking altogether”.
            I was a smoker, I smoked for 25 years, and hated every min of it. I smoked less then half a pack a day, but I could never quit. I tried the drugs and the nightmares were so vivid and bad, I felt like I was becoming a schizophrenic. The patches and inhalers were so expensive as to prohibit their use. The Government website you address may be helpful to some, but they did nothing for me. And the along come eCigs. Just like the inhalers the FDA approves. So I tried them, and never picked up another real cig. I went from the 25mg/10ml, then the 12mg/ml, and finally the 0mg. I did it in 4 months. The eCig satisfied my addiction, and allowed me to wean myself off nicotine. I think they saved my life. I think they can save many lives. And I think you are doing a disservice to the smokers out there that this could work for. Why not write a balanced story??
            BTW, eCigs cost about 75% less then the gum or the patches. The disadvantaged (poor) can afford this method, it is about half the cost of smoking.
            again, thank you for your reply, and explaining your thoughts on this. Hopefully you will put aside your hatred for eCigs, and give some thought to what I have written.

          • SiteAdmin9


            I truly enjoy this discussion as this is the entire purpose of DangerOf.com. However, I am still seeing the disconnect on how I am misinforming people. I have cited sources, included statistics, scientific data and you still think I’m misinforming. Though, you may not agree with my point, that’s fine. But, this is not misinformation. That is your opinion.

            And, I have been a smoker, my brother was a smoker, my father was a smoker, my mother was a smoker and my uncle was a smoker. We all quit “cold turkey”. No patches, no supplements, no prescriptions. Pure willpower. It’s not disingenuous, it’s the type of personality and your own internal drive to quit. If you hated smoking, then you should have quit. Drugs and other replacement therapies only reduce cravings to help you quit. You still have cravings. I still have cravings. Taking other drugs to supplement a drug is like a heroin addict supplementing his or her addiction with Methadone. I just don’t believe it’s the best approach. Nicotine may be more difficult to quit than heroin, but if the core of your being wants to quit there are other ways than drug therapies. That is just the method that worked for you!

            I applaud you for using eCigs in your aid to wean you off of cigarettes. Again, I think you are misinterpreting my purpose. I am not suggesting that eCigs are worse than conventional cigarettes, I am saying they are bad in their own way. The best solution is to abstain, would you not agree?

            The reason this story is not balanced is because that is the entire purpose of the site. The name of it is “Danger Of”. I am exposing the dangers of the products that we consume. I wrote this article because, like you, I used to use eCigs, my friends still do and they have constant arguments how this self medicated “therapy” is a great replacement for cigarettes. While this is true, it is not true when you are using them constantly. They pose a danger of their own. When you are using them to get off of cigarettes, that’s entirely your choice and I’m not contesting that.

            Sure the site I provided may not work for you. But it exists because it works for the millions of others who use it. Again, this is more based on personal experience, not fact. In fact “there haven’t been any scientific studies that prove e-cigs actually help people to quit smoking. There is also concern that using e-cigs may lead kids to start smoking regular cigarettes.” http://smokefree.gov/e-cigarettes. Perhaps this website, too, is misinformation…

            What does price have to do with anything? Again, nowhere do I see nicotine listed in the necessary nutrients. It’s not. Simply put, it’s a drug. The patches are a drug. The cigarettes are a drug. They are all just variants of the same thing.

            And finally, I don’t have a hatred towards anything. That would be unwise. I am simply exposing the “other side” of coin. The part that many people overlook when doing that “switch”. Can it help you quit, sure! And you did it so you are living proof! But the BEST way to quit is to stop entirely.

            This article is also geared to those who aren’t smokers, but can easily get hooked on nicotine unintentionally. For example, somebody who never smoked cigarettes in their lives suddenly stumble upon a blueberry pie flavored eCig may be inclined to try it because “it’s harmless”. It’s not. And this article exists to show that.

            Your posts are appreciated and I love this kind of discussion. Please share this with your friends and perhaps we can garnish other opinions.

  • Dave Smith

    duh…Nicotine inhalers (which boost nicotine levels in the blood more quickly than
    other nicotine medications) raise blood pressure in about 1 of every 30 people
    who use them. High blood pressure with the use of a nicotine patch (or gum, inhaler, lozenge,
    or nasal spray) may mean you are taking too much nicotine. However, high blood
    pressure by itself, or accompanied by nervous jitters and a fast heart rate, can
    be a sign of nicotine withdrawal.

  • Dave Smith

    Your entire article is not based in any fact. Maybe you should have consulted someone (anyone) lol. You may have caused someone’s death (someone who would have given up cancer causing cigarettes) with your idiotic nonsense.