Prevalence of E-Cigarette Use High Among U.S. Preteens, Teens

Most current exclusive e-cig users used flavored e-cigarettes, most often fruit, menthol/mint, candy

TUESDAY, Nov. 5, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- The prevalence of self-reported current electronic cigarette use is high among U.S. middle and high school students, according to a study published online Nov. 5 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Karen A. Cullen, Ph.D., from the Center for Tobacco Products at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in Silver Spring, Maryland, and colleagues conducted cross-sectional analyses of 19,018 U.S. students in grades 6 to 12 participating in the National Youth Tobacco Survey (10,097 high school students and 8,837 middle school students; response rate, 66.3 percent).

The researchers found that current e-cigarette use was reported by an estimated 27.5 and 10.5 percent of high school and middle school students, respectively. Among current e-cigarette users, an estimated 34.2 and 18.0 percent of high school and middle school students, respectively, reported frequent use, and an estimated 63.6 and 65.4 percent, respectively, reported exclusive use of e-cigarettes. Of current e-cigarette users, 59.1 and 54.1 percent of high school and middle school students, respectively, reported Juul as their usual e-cigarette brand; 13.8 and 16.8 percent, respectively, reported not having a usual e-cigarette brand. Among current exclusive e-cigarette users, an estimated 72.2 and 59.2 percent of high school and middle school students, respectively, used flavored e-cigarettes, most commonly fruit, menthol or mint, and candy, desserts, or other sweets.

"The results of this survey are particularly concerning given relatively high exposure to nicotine through the use of nicotine salt-based e-cigarette products such as Juul," the authors write.

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