Suzanne Starr, who teaches smoking cessation classes, said that she was skeptical about the potential use of the devices as tool to stop smoking and said she was not surprised about the FDA's worries about its chemical and other components.
"If you're hanging on to one or two of those issues, you're not quitting," she said.
"They've been really popular," Sims said. "We haven't been ordering enough of them."
Because the products have not been submitted to the FDA for evaluation or approval, the agency said it has no way of knowing, except for the limited testing it has performed, the levels of nicotine or the amounts or kinds of other chemicals that the various brands of these products deliver to the user.
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"You're getting straight nicotine, which in and of itself is not good for you," she said.
of e cigarettes at the border, according to the Omega Silver And Gold Watch
The FDA's concerns, outlined in a recent report, stem from both accessibility and the contents of the cartridges.
to address its concerns.
One cartridge is the equivalent of a pack of cigarettes, he said, and at 5 for $15.99 ends up being cheaper than the per pack price of $5.39 for a popular paper brand.
The agency has been challenged regarding its jurisdiction over certain e cigarettes in a case currently pending in federal district court. The agency is also planning additional activities Omega Speedmaster Apollo 11
The products are "readily available" online and in some shopping malls, according to an FDA news release.
"You don't have any secondhand smoke," Sims said. "You can smoke them in restaurants and bars. The smoke dissipates, and you don't have any ashes. And it doesn't have any of the harmful chemicals. You just get nicotine."
"The pharmaceutical industry says they should, and retail industry says they should," he said. "And Congress is trying to figure out how to tax it. When they get through, it'll be a mess."
Tobacco shop owner Glenn Sims and others who had heard of the technology not all tobacconists contacted had heard of e cigarettes said the though the smoking alternative was safe and friendlier to others.
agency's news release. Local retailers said that stock tends to come from Asia, especially China.
In one sample, the FDA's analyses detected diethylene glycol, a chemical used in antifreeze that is toxic to humans, and in several other samples, the FDA analyses detected levels of other known carcinogens and toxic chemicals to which users "could potentially be exposed."
"You could start out on high and taper on down," he said.
Few dispute the potential popularity of the devices, no matter which side of the debate they are on.
Smoking has three different components, she said a physical, hand to mouth portion; the actual chemical addiction; and an emotional addiction.
The agency recently announced that a lab analysis of electronic cigarette samples has found that they contain carcinogens and toxic chemicals such as diethylene glycol, an ingredient used in antifreeze. The FDA's Division of Pharmaceutical Analysis analyzed the ingredients in a small sample of cartridges from two leading brands of electronic cigarettes.
"They are also available in different flavors, such as chocolate and mint, which may appeal to young people," the FDA said.
Sims, who owns Smoker's Discount on South 14th Street, said he was sold out of the gizmos Friday, although he expected a new shipment soon. He first encountered the battery powered, rechargeable "cigarettes" at a tobacco show in New Orleans about three months ago.
Food and Drug Administration plans to turn greater scrutiny toward so called electronic cigarettes, at least one local tobacco shop owner said the newfangled smokes were popular in Abilene.
The devices generally contain cartridges filled with nicotine, flavor and other chemicals, said an FDA news release, turning them into a vapor inhaled by the user.
The government organization also worries that the e cigarettes do not contain warnings comparable to FDA approved nicotine replacement products or conventional cigarettes.
"Right now, there's a big whoop te do in Washington about as to who is going to get to sell it," said Gerald Middleton, owner of Jerry's Smoke Shop, in Abilene.
"Over a year's time, you can save a lot of money," he said, although some view the initial outlay for the device itself $79.99 as expensive. "I think it could be a wave of the future."
And, he said, the cartridges come in high, medium, low or even zero nicotine content, meaning one could in theory use them to quit smoking, he said.
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