Monday 25 June 2012

Passive Vaping And Third Hand E-Cig Vapour, The New Fantasy Fetish 'Science'

Such has been the success of the tobacco control industry in bastardising science by pandering to the fears and prejudices of the most intolerant in society, it's fascinating to watch health-obsessed fruitcakes of all stripes attempt to copy their methods.

Following the Godber Blueprint to the letter, we've seen them all busily "fostering the perception" that their particular bête noir is harming everyone around the user. Hence daft efforts at scaring the public into believing the threat of passive drinking and passive obesity, amongst others.

In a hilarious new twist, though, this study from the University of Braunschweig in Germany attempts to go through anti-tobacco's joke list in fast forward to demonise electronic cigarettes.

Far from beginning from a neutral standpoint, the abstract decides that - as e-cigs contain particles and chemicals - "“passive vaping” must be expected from the consumption of e-cigarettes".

Now, I've regularly charted here the potential of these marvellous little devices to intensely irritate psycho antis, but I think I must have under-estimated the sentiment. It seems the hunt is on - and the grants waiting for liars researchers to suck up - to find a silver bullet with which to get e-cigs banned, especially now the tobacco industry is enthusiastically eyeing them.

The Braunschweig study is behind a paywall, but my delightful medical pdf-getting fellow jewel robber has come up trumps again and furnished Dick with a copy. After waxing lyrical about passive tobacco smoke, they move seamlessly on to vapour in the very next paragraph.
Beyond indoor climate, air flow conditions, room size and number of e-cigarette users many other parameters have the potential to affect “passive vaping”. The concentrations of the exhaled compounds during e-cigarette consumption can be expected to differ with the composition of the applied liquids, the type of e-cigarette in use, the age of the e-cigarette (e.g. due to remains of previous liquids), length of the puff and interval between the puffs. Moreover, the composition of the exhaled air will be affected by age, sex, activity, health status, and diet of the user.
As you can see, it's no longer a question of whether passive vaping is a real thing, more the level of threat it poses dependant on who is vaping.

To be worried about something so very unthreatening as water vapour with an infinitesimally negligible volume of unused (and harmless) nicotine, you have to wonder if the study authors have ever seen a car.

But it gets more neurotic still in the following paragraph.
Another important aspect in the future discussion about e-cigarettes will be the effect of “thirdhand-smoke” (THS) that mainly describes human exposure against residues of smoking on clothes, furniture and other indoor surfaces (Matt et al., 2011)(that's the über-loopy Georg E Matt, folks - DP). In case of e-cigarettes the solvent of the “liquids” may remain on available surfaces and be a source for the contamination of residents.
This is taking a thing that isn't even real when dealing with tobacco cigarettes, applying it wholesale to e-cigs ... and struggling desperately to keep a straight face while doing so.

When reading such hysterical and blatantly policy-based research as this, I wonder if someone must have thrown me through a magic wardrobe sometime when I was asleep.


Steve K said...

An interesting companion to a new study (that is available for the world to see gratis) that shows, amazingly, there's not even nicotine in second hand vapor.  The study is being submitted for peer review as I speak. If you pardon the shameless plug I might direct your attention here: 

Dick_Puddlecote said...

You're always welcome to plug here, Steve. Ta for the heads up. :)

Jay said...

I wonder what these liars cum researchers think of all those many types of smoked foods: salmon, sausages, ham, cheese etc.... Same residues, same 5 trillion chemicals...  oh, wait, CRUK said there's no evidence that smoked foods causes cancer, but to be safe avoid them or don't eat it too often.  Dang.

lleweton said...

Oh that the original Peter Simples, Colin Welch and Michael Wharton were living at this hour.

Chris Price said...

It is important that citizens not be exposed to any environmental influences that may be injurious to health. Unless of course that means heavy industry, car manufacturing, car users, power generation, oil drilling, government activities or any other industry or usergroup that has enough funding or power to protect themselves. That leaves cottage industries and users of harmless consumer products, then.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Yep. Don't forget ones which are barred from saying anything, like tobacco and - soon - alcohol and 'Big' food. ;)

Jax said...

Ha. Ha. Ha.  I wonder now if all those smug ex-tobacco-smoking-now-whiter-than-white-vapers will see the similarities?  I wonder if they’ll actually have the guts to swallow their pride and tell their erstwhile smoking friends that they were right all along?  I wonder if they’ll even make the connection between the two?  Probably not, just like the head-in-the-sand drinkers who profess outrage at any proposed restrictions on their drinking whilst remaining wilfully blind to the glaringly obvious fact that all the time they sit on their backsides doing nothing about the smoking ban then they remain in a totally untenable position vis-a-vis arguing against the same principles being applied to booze. 

And, let's be honest, anyone who’s given up tobacco because of all the hype – whether to replace it with e-cigs or not – is clearly incapable of looking into any story more deeply than the screaming headlines and the first paragraph, and will probably swallow the lot - hook, line and sinker – and, just like they did with tobacco, obediently do just as they are told by their “betters” and “quit the vapes.”

Keith Ng said...

That's a big fat strawman you've set up. They don't claim "passive vaping" is a health risk. They just say that parts of the chemical mixture escape or is exhaled as part of "smoking" the e-cig, and then analyse that mixture.

It's an entirely mundane, run-of-the-mill scientific report. So keep your panties on.

Tom said...

With a political motive behind it.

live sports said...


Furor Teutonicus said...

XX  be a source for the contamination of residents.XX

Oxford dictionary; "Contaminate.Make something, or someone impure by adding dangerous or desease carrying substances."

As I presume the report is in German;


ALL can only be linked with one "idea" and that is "to poison".
Want it to be MORE clear than that, before you take your head out of your arse?

Sana Nolan said...

I think a small clarification is in order. Unless I'm missing something the study shows that exhaled vapor contains no nicotine meaning that 100% of the nicotine that made it passed the atomizer has been absorbed. What it doesn't tell us is WHERE it gets absorbed. Claiming its lung absorbtion would seem to be a leap of faith given other research points more heavily to upper pharynx absorbtion.

Just sayin' ;)

Lyn said...

"Moreover, the composition of the exhaled air will be affected by age, sex, activity, health status, and diet of the user."
So, dependant on the above, are we not supposed to breath now, either?  Or do we have to pass some rigourous test to show we are pure enough to actually breath/exhale in public places?
I am referring to everyone, not just smokers in the above, as who knows what nasties are shacking up inside any one of us?

JonathanBagley said...

I'd say that the authors did have an agenda. As Dick and many others have noted, propylene glycol vapour has been passively inhaled for decades in theatres and discos, so why the sudden interest? It has even been documented that it does occasionally cause irritation to the throat and lungs. Nevertheless, if you have access to Wileyonline and are prepared to trust the authors, there is quite a bit of interesting anaylsis of the composition of both ecig and cigarette smoke. 

JonathanBagley said...

Keith, I think you should declare an interest as an anti tobacco blogger.
It doesn't invalidate your comment, but it gives us some idea of how you ended up reading this blog. Dick is famous, but NewZealand is NewZealand. Did you read about him here?

Jax said...

They don't claim "passive vaping" is a health risk.”  ...  Yet. ”I wonder now if all those smug ex-tobacco-smoking-now-whiter-than-white-vapers will see the similarities?” Guess that answers that question, then!   Keith, why do you think they’ve bothered to analyse the substances found in e-cig vapour?  For fun?  Just out of curiosity? In order to prove how harmless it is?  Really?  Honestly, truly, really?  Oh, puleeeeze!  I despair ...

nisakiman said...

Gawd, it's going to be second-hand bloody breathing next...

Furor Teutonicus said...

If you live in London, or Birmingham, I would not be tempterd to take TOO close a look at what is coming out of your kitchen tap.

Words have failed said...

Just how much longer do we suffocate from the words of those who
yearn for freedom.liberty and choice
Health fanatics do not have any time for reason,for debate,for understanding,for justice nor democracy,for words in any form
They do not understand the meaning of balanced discussion
Their rules apply ,protests are not allowed,objections forbidden
Tyranny throughout the ages was never answered by words
Most will know the cure for those who will not listen
however unsavoury that may be.

Mag01 said...


This is one of the reasons why there are smokers that have
very little time for e-cigs, their manufacturers and users. To peddle their
wares, e-cig manufacturers are even more rabidly antismoking than antismokers
(if that’s possible):


Mag01 said...

Also, having noted the Chapman Trick a few threads ago, it
is e-cig suppliers that promote one of the most inflammatory versions of the trick,


[Note particularly the “Cyanhydric acid – was used in gas

Dick_Puddlecote said...

As I say in the article, e-cigs get right up the noses of TC. ;)

Skeen66 said...

When I read an article such as this one, I keep imagining how "The Big Sleep" would be filmed today. Can you see Humphrey Bogart as Philip Marlowe working in this culture? Not smoking? Afraid to flirt with Lauren Bacall because she might be offended by his sexism? Driving one of those pitiful excuses for a car (you know, one of those squashed- up ones that look like fancy golf carts)? Chewing out General Sternwood in his hot house for not contributing his "fair share" in taxes?  General Sternwood telling him he may not smoke in the hot house because he might contaminate his orchids? Bogart feeling an inferiority complex when Alice asks him if the books look like grapefruit? Bogart worried about the size of his carbon footprint? Giving Cannino a fighting chance during the gun play at the end? Inviting Brody for a drink in the local bar? Lecturing Lauren Bacall about her gambling? What a yawner! Or, picture "The Maltese Falcon" filmed by today's cultural standards!

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Rick said...

I vape where ever I like. Airports, hospitals, bars, restaurants etc. I'm in Canada.

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