Objectives: To explore if the dramatic
decrease in price of e-cigarette has transformed this new product into a product used for
tobacco initiation among a teenage population. Methods: The authors added a question in 2012
on e-cigarette in the yearly survey on tobacco consumption in Paris schoolchildren. The study is conducted
on a randomly selected sample from 2% of classes since 1991. Results: 277
(8.1%) of the 3409 schoolchildren studied (including 575 non responders
to this question) reported having had an experience with e-cigarette.
Experimentation rate is 6.4% among the 12 - 14-year-old,
11.8% among the 15 - 16-year-old and 9% among the 17-year-old schoolchildren. Among the
12 - 14- year-old schoolchildren, 64.4% of e-cigarette experimentation was by
non-smokers. Of the 17-year-old teenagers who had used e-cigarettes, 12.4% were
non-smokers. For the whole population, 33.2% of those having tried e-cigarette
are non-smoker, 22.7% occasional smoker, 3.6% ex-smoker and 40.4% daily smoker.
Those who experiment cannabis, shisha or binge-drinking are more frequently
users of e-cigarette. In the smoker group, there is an inverse trend of rela- tionship
between the readiness to quit tobacco and the rate of use of e-cigarette. Conclusion: For teenager’s, e-cigare- ttes have become not a product to aid quit
tobacco but a product for experimentation and initiation of cigarette use.
Regulation is urgently needed to control the emergent use of this new tobacco
product by children.
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