Tobacco 21 advocates are pushing the debunked ‘gateway’ vaping narrative
“Unfortunately, we are not deprived of misleading research that threatens to steer users away from reduced-harm products, like e-cigarettes, and toward readily available yet more dangerous tobacco products,” Dr. Carrie Wade, harm reduction policy director for the R Street Institute, said in a recent editorialfor Real Clear Science. “When the overwhelming majority of research does not support such a hypothesis, and the research that does draws weak conclusions, it would be egregiously irresponsible for us to craft public policies against the weight of evidence.”
Dr. Brad Rodu, a professor of medicine at the University of Louisville, similarly called out researchers at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) in a post on Tobacco Truth Jan. 3, saying they misrepresent the results of their recent federally funded study on vaping to give the impression the devices are luring teens to cigarettes.
The study used an analysis of the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) survey for 2013 to 2014 to analyze the habits of 9,909 young adults. The UCSF researchers followed up with the teens a year later to see how their tobacco and nicotine use changed.
Of the 9,909 young adults surveyed after one year, only 219 smoked cigarettes within 30 days of being asked by researchers. Of the 219 people who smoked after one year, 175 had not used hookahs, smokeless tobacco or vaping devices at the beginning of the survey, according to Dr. Rodu.