'Heat-not-burn' cigarettes still release cancer-causing chemicals

Reuters Health) - - A new type of "heat-not-burn" cigarette releases some of the same cancer-causing chemicals found in traditional cigarette smoke, a recent experiment suggests.

Researchers analyzed the chemical compounds and nicotine in smoke from traditional cigarettes and from the new devices, which are designed to heat disposable tobacco sticks and give users the taste of tobacco without the smoke or ash.

The smoke released by this "heat-not-burn" cigarette had 84 percent of the nicotine found in traditional cigarettes, researchers report in JAMA Internal Medicine.

Heat-not-burn cigarettes also released chemicals linked to cancer including carbon monoxide, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs).

The research team was surprised to find that heat-not-burn cigarettes “released some of these chemicals in much higher concentrations that conventional cigarettes," said lead study author Dr. Reto Auer of the University of Bern in Switzerland.

"We need more studies to find out about the health consequences” of smoking heat-not-burn cigarettes, Auer said by email.
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