If you are thinking of quitting smoking, electronic cigarettes, commonly known as e-cigarettes, stand a better chance of helping you achieve your goal than nicotine replacement treatments, such as patches and gum, show results of a major clinical trial.
E-cigarettes are almost twice as effective as nicotine replacement treatments at helping smokers to quit, according to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine.
The trial, which involved almost 900 smokers who also received additional behavioural support, found that 18 per cent of e-cigarette users were smoke-free after a year, compared to 9.9 per cent of participants who were using other nicotine replacement therapies.
"This is the first trial to test the efficacy of modern e-cigarettes in helping smokers quit. E-cigarettes were almost twice as effective as the 'gold standard' combination of nicotine replacement products," said lead researcher Peter Hajek, Professor at Queen Mary University of London.
"Although a large number of smokers report that they have quit smoking successfully with the help of e-cigarettes, health professionals have been reluctant to recommend their use because of the lack of clear evidence from randomised controlled trials. This is now likely to change," Hajek added.