E-cigarette awareness, use, and harm perceptions in US adults

Jennifer L. Pearson, Amanda Richardson, Raymond S. Niaura, Donna M. Vallone, David B. Abrams

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

Objectives. We estimated e-cigarette (electronic nicotine delivery system) awareness, use, and harm perceptions among US adults. Methods. We drew data from 2 surveys conducted in 2010: a national online study (n = 2649) and the Legacy Longitudinal Smoker Cohort (n = 3658). We used multivariable models to examine e-cigarette awareness, use, and harm perceptions. Results. In the online survey, 40.2% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 37.3, 43.1) had heard of e-cigarettes, with awareness highest among current smokers. Utilization was higher among current smokers (11.4%; 95% CI = 9.3, 14.0) than in the total population (3.4%; 95% CI = 2.6, 4.2), with 2.0% (95% CI = 1.0, 3.8) of former smokers and 0.8% (95% CI = 0.35, 1.7) of never-smokers ever using e-cigarettes. In both surveys, non-Hispanic Whites, current smokers, young adults, and those with at least a high-school diploma were most likely to perceive e-cigarettes as less harmful than regular cigarettes. Conclusions. Awareness of e-cigarettes is high, and use among current and former smokers is evident. We recommend product regulation and careful surveillance to monitor public health impact and emerging utilization patterns, and to ascertain why, how, and under what conditions e-cigarettes are being used.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1758-1766
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican journal of public health
Volume102
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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