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Electronic cigarettes, or e-cigarettes, are tobacco products that have been sold in the U.S. for about a decade. They include e-pens, e-pipes, e-hookah, and e-cigars, known collectively as ENDS—electronic nicotine delivery systems. They're also sometimes called JUULs, "vapes" and "vape pens." E-cigarettes are the most commonly used tobacco products among kids—and it's become an epidemic. While much remains to be determined about the lasting health consequences of e-cigarettes, there’s evolving evidence about the health risks of e-cigarettes on the lungs—including irreversible lung damage and lung disease.

The American Lung Association is very concerned that we are at risk of losing another generation to tobacco-caused diseases as the result of e-cigarettes. The Lung Association remains extremely troubled about the rapid increase of youth using these products and has repeatedly called upon the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to increase their oversight and scrutiny of these products to protect kids.

What You Need to Know About E-Cigarettes

Below are answers to common questions about e-cigarettes, including health consequences, risks of secondhand emissions, kids and e-cigarettes and FDA oversight.

What Are E-Cigarettes?

What's in E-Cigarettes?

Are E-Cigarettes a Gateway to Youth Smoking?

How Many Youth Use E-Cigarettes or Vape?

What Are the Health Consequences of E-Cigarette Use?

Can E-Cigarettes Help Smokers Quit?

How Can Smokers Quit Their Use of All Tobacco Products?

Are There Risks of Secondhand E-Cigarette Emissions?

Why Isn't More Being Done to Protect Kids from E-Cigarettes?

Did the Trump Administration Say it Would Remove all Flavored Products from the Marketplace?

  • Sources
    1. Sassano MF, Davis ES, Keating JE, Zorn BT, Kochar TK, Wolfgang MC, et al. (2018) Evaluation of e-liquid toxicity using an open-source high-throughput screening assay. PLoS Biol 16(3): e2003904.
    2. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. E-Cigarette Use Among Youth and Young Adults: A Report of the Surgeon General—Executive Summary. Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 2016

More Information on E-Cigarettes

The Surgeon General reports e-cigarette use among youth is a significant public health concern and steps must be taken by parents, educators and especially policymakers to discourage use of e-cigarettes. Learn more about e-cigarettes lung health risks and get downloadable resources for parents, schools and teens.

The Impact of E-Cigarettes on the Lung
There's evolving evidence about the health risks and impact of e-cigarettes on the lungs.

What Parents Should Know about E-Cigarettes
Information for parents to learn more about e-cigarettes, "vaping" and JUULS and the health effects on kids.

What Schools Should Know about E-Cigarettes
Information on e-cigarettes, "vapes" and JUULs for schools to learn more about what they are, why kids use them and health risks.

What Teens Should Know about E-Cigarettes
Information for teens on e-cigarettes, "vapes" and JUULs, including what they are and health effects.

Additional E-Cigarette Resources
Links other websites, reports educational materials, toolkits and more information on e-cigarettes.

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Guidance for Healthcare Providers

This guidance is intended to support healthcare providers in their understanding and tracking of -cigarette and vaping product use. Learn more.

    Page Last Updated: January 10, 2020

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