Will e-cigarettes see Hong Kong side with science or fearmongering on tobacco use?

From: South China Morning Post | Letters


One should perhaps look across the Pacific to the main stage. Mixed messages have been received by the public over Philip Morris’ application to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to make three potential “modified risk” claims when marketing its heat-not-burn product, IQOS. The product has already been launched in about 30 countries, with almost four million smokers switching. It is claimed that, since IQOS does not produce most of the toxic substances produced when tobacco combusts, it can be a less harmful alternative for those who want to keep smoking.


But much to the anti-tobacco crusaders’ dismay, the panel actually agreed with Philip Morris’ claim that IQOS reduces the body’s exposure to harmful and potentially harmful chemicals. What the panel rejected was whether this reduction would translate into a reduced risk of smoking-related disease compared to continued smoking, but measuring that would require more long-term studies.


Zhang Li Hua, Kwun Tong

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