Vaping Dangers vs. Tobacco Cigarette Dangers

Experts react to Cuomo's comment vaping kills quicker than traditional cigarettes

Tom Puckett
October 10, 2019 - 4:00 am

Buffalo, NY (WBEN) As Governor Cuomo addressed the first vaping-related death in New York, he said vaping may be more dangerous than a cigarette. ]

"Cigarettes didn't kill you in year one. E-cigarettes, year one, a thousand cases," claimed Cuomo.

Dr. Andrew Hyland of Roswell Park says he understands where Cuomo is coming from. "Certainly you hear the passion and urgency to try and address what's becoming a widespread public health problem," says Hyland. "What I heard was an urgency to get to the root cause of the acute respiratory conditions. Notwithstanding, cigarette smoking remains an epidemic."

"The vaping issue to me is a wake up call to say we've got a signficant problem related to vaping, but also to bring attention to the broader tobacco use problem," adds Hyland. When it comes to smoking deaths, Hyland notes, "the conditions are chronic when you get older. That toxicity happens over many years. I think where the governor is coming from is the urgency and how rapid these respiratory conditions are being realized adds to the urgency." 

Hyland says complicating the matter is reports those who died from vaping-related illnesses may have been vaping THC off the black market.

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Anthony Billoni of Tobacco Free WNY says he sees problems with vaping as well. "Hundreds of different chemicals go into tobacco and now we see hundreds of different chemicals that go into the manufacture of a single flavor of juice. We just had a researcher show us the juices when combined with the acclerant there could be problems with that," says Billoni.

Billoni agrees with Hyland Cuomo wants to get to the bottom of the vaping-related illnesses. "He might say it's dangerous, and we agree it's a health emergency for sure," says Billoni. "He's responding as a citizen without the benefit of experience health experts in the field are looking at, and he's feeling there's an emergency. We just know 28,000 people died every year from tobacco cigarette use."

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