A new recently published study on the Environmental Health Perspectives portal reveals that the electronic cigarettes are not totally free of risks and suggests that the very act of vaporizing can expose people to dangerous levels of toxic metals such as lead and arsenic.
The research was carried out at John Hopkins University, where the researchers conducted a study in which participated 56 users of electronic cigarettes. The researchers asked participants to give their devices for test.
First, the researchers studied the liquid in the dispenser for 15 common metals. Subsequently, the study went further to analyze the vapor that users inhale in their lungs, which is generated by a metal coil that heats the liquid.
Finally, the scientists checked the fluid that remained in the device once it was used.
Toxic metals have been detected in the electronic cigarettes’ vapors
Once the liquid is heated, scientists found high levels of lead, chromium, nickel, manganese, and zinc.
The first three are toxic in any of their forms, while the last two can be dangerous if inhaled.
The culprit of this contamination, according to the authors of this study, is the metal coil that the device needs to heat the liquid that is then transformed into the vapor that’s inhaled by the electronic cigarettes smokers.
“It is important that the companies that develop the E-cigs and the consumers know that these heating metal coils give off toxic metals that are filling the vapor that is inhaled,” said Ana Maria Rule, a researcher specialized in air pollution at the John Hopkins University and one of the study authors.
The question that is asked now is how harmful is the use of the E-cigarettes. The researchers say the results reveal that using E-cigs instead of conventional cigarettes can result in less exposure to cadmium, but, at the same time, Electronic cigarette vapor contains lead and other toxic metals which may also cause cancer.