(RxWiki News) Even if they've never smoked a cigarette, teens who vape may be more likely to start smoking cigarettes later on, according to a new study.
This study found that high school seniors who used an electronic cigarette but had never smoked traditional tobacco cigarettes before were more than four times as likely as those who didn't vape to smoke a cigarette within the next year.
The University of Michigan researchers behind this study offered a possible explanation: Vaping may change perceptions about the risks of smoking, making it more likely that teens will try tobacco cigarettes.
"At the very least, teens who vape should be considered at high risk for future smoking, even if they believe they are vaping only flavoring," said lead study author Dr. Richard Miech, a University of Michigan professor, in a news release.
E-cigs are battery-powered devices that heat a solution that contains nicotine, the primary addictive chemical in tobacco. This creates a vapor the user inhales. The nicotine solutions are often flavored.
The researchers behind this study based their findings on surveys of 347 high school seniors who were part of a larger study.
This study was published in the journal Tobacco Control.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse funded this research. The study authors disclosed no potential conflicts of interest.