By Kim Polacek, APR, CPRC - June 23, 2022
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is cracking down on electronic cigarettes. The agency ordered Juul to stop selling and distributing its e-cigarette devices and prefilled cartridges today, saying the company did not provide sufficient evidence to assess the potential health risks of using the products.
“Today’s action is further progress on the FDA’s commitment to ensuring that all e-cigarette and electronic nicotine delivery system products currently being marketed to consumers meet our public health standards,” FDA Commissioner Dr. Robert Califf said in the press release.
The ruling followed a two-yearlong review of data provided by Juul. The FDA said while it didn’t receive clinical information suggesting an immediate health threat associated with the use of Juul products, the agency did have concerns over insufficient and conflicting data, including whether harmful chemicals could leach out of the Juul’s prefilled pods.
“The agency has dedicated significant resources to review products from the companies that account for most of the U.S. market. We recognize these make up a significant part of the available products and many have played a disproportionate role in the rise in youth vaping,” said Califf.
The FDA also acknowledged that Juul has helped many smokers quit but urged those looking to transition away from cigarettes and cigars to switch to other vaping products that have been reviewed and authorized by the agency.
“The public, and in particular current smokers, should not take this ruling as evidence that e-cigarettes are as harmful as combustible cigarettes. In fact, the science indicates that vaping is far less harmful than smoking and can be an effective cessation aid,” said Dr. Damon Vidrine, tobacco researcher and interim chair of the Health Outcomes & Behavior Department at Moffitt Cancer Center.