Rethink attitudes...

Y'know this whole "THR" thing? It stands for "Tobacco Harm Reduction". I prefer to style it "Tobacco RISK Reduction", just because I'm a pedant, picky, and very wary of negatives. And given that everything - and I do mean everything - carries a risk with it, but may not be inherently harmful, it seems to me that "risk" is the better word to use.

Anyway, that may be a bit by the by. But, by the same token, relevant. You see, I'm annoyed ("NO!" they all cried). Yes, I am, because, you see, I HAD thought that all we vapers were battling on behalf of THR or TRR - that is to say, so that folks had the choice of using safer delivery of nicotine. Or, to put it another way, fighting for folks to have the ability to use nicotine safely. Now, that may seem as though I've got a downer on proper smoking - you know, sparking up a cigarette and inhaling the smoke. I haven't. I haven't swallowed the Tobacco Control Industry's propaganda. I don't think that tobacco companies are inherently evil - they're simply legal businesses supplying a demand.

And there is a demand for safer nicotine delivery mechanisms, be they Snus, Ecigs, or Heat not Burn. Now, at the end of the day, it matters not whence safer delivery systems emanate - a safer delivery system is a safer delivery system. But it seems that, for some folks, the progenitor of said systems appears to be important.

For ASH in the UK, the manufacturer is very important. They are presently at war - but not against COPD, Lung cancer, and all of the other malaises attributed to smoking. No - they appear not to give a tuppenny toss about that. They are at war with the tobacco companies. the FCTC is at war with the tobacco companies. Their aim is to put them out of business. They're idiots. Pure and simple.

And here's why:

The big multinational tobacco conglomerates have massive marketing power, massive distribution networks, and masses of money to throw at research into - guess what - safer nicotine delivery systems. And safer nicotine delivery systems are, really, what everyone should want. There's probably no other cartel of manufacturers more optimally placed to get safer nicotine out into the big wide world. But that, of course, doesn't suit the anti-smoker types. Why? Well, in my opinion (yes, I have opinions), "allowing" them to develop safer nicotine delivery systems that would, in time, obsolete their current lit offerings would mean that the companies survive - even thrive - and that just won't punish them. And that will never do.

Now, I expect asshattery like that from the ideological useful idiots at the FCTC and the various ASHes. They're blinkered, ideological, and blind to the needs of the people they're supposed to want to "help". It's their way or the highway, amigos.

But I do NOT expect the same ideological asshattery from vapers. We're supposed to be the enlightened ones, the ones that have seen through the FCTC and other groups that just want nicotine gone away. We're supposed to be the ones fighting COPD, Lung Cancer and so on and so forth. At least, that's alway been my take.

But no - we now have high profile vapers actively campaigning against the likes of IQOS and Glo (PMI and BAT respectively). On what grounds? On the grounds that they're made by (shock, horror) tobacco companies.

One word.

Fuckwits.

I have wasted eight years of my life.

And still they try...

Back in the mists of time, I remember a certain person in a blue suit proselytising the merits of the EU Commissions plans to medicinalise ecigs. This was shortly after she'd applauded the MHRA's thankfully aborted attempt to either medicinalise them or ban them outright.

But, yesterday, she had another go, this time in front of the Science Committee in UK Parliament. I sat and watched, gobsmacked, as she trotted out all the old canards:
The public will be reassured that they're safe and effective
People on low incomes will be able to have access to them
The Stop Smoking Services will be in a better position to "help" people stop smoking (and, by the way, can we stop closing them)
And so on and so forth.

She even tried to blame the MHRA for there not being any med reg ecigs available, suggesting they need to look to their processes to help this happen.

Now, I'm not even going to get annoyed. I expected this. What annoys me is that there are vapers who believe this shite, but they miss the big picture.

If ecigs - even just one model - are released as medicines, then they must ALL be medicines. There can be no other outcome. Consumer reg ecigs and med reg ecigs cannot co-exist, there can be only one. Why?

Well, let's take the example of any other product that exists as both a medicine and a consumer product. Oh, wait, hang on, just a minute, lemme think... NOPE! There is no such thing! Why? Because, in the UK and EU, once something's a medicine, all iterations of that thing are medicines. Take muslin cloth bandages. All of them have to have a marketing authorisation - you can't buy one without an MA. You CAN buy a bolt of muslin cloth and cut it to make your own "bandages", but you could not, then, sell them without an MA. They're medicines.

Now, there are folks out there that will say "Yeah, yeah, Dave, heard it all before, but they won't do anything about it - the SSS folks will be able to prescribe crappy ecigs for folks who need them, and we'll still be able to buy the good stuff from vape shops and online". Really?

Quite the opposite. Go and try to buy St. John's Wort extract in a bottle or pouch. Following the Herbal Products Directive, it has to have a medicines license. If you can identify it, you can pick the plant, but prepare it in any form - even a wine - and it MUST have a medicines license at worst, or a Herbal Products license at best, and then, only if you can prove it has a traditional role as a non-medicinal remedy. Check it out. It's a minefield. It's why Holland and Barret sell mostly dried fruit and body-building supplements these days.

These bastards simply want control of the nicotine market, and if they get med regs ecigs, they get control of the whole of the market. More than that, they get to wipe it out at the stroke of a pen. How" Dead simple - if all ecigs are medicines, then they can revoke all licenses for any trumped-up reason. End of vaping, overnight. And don't think they wouldn't. The aforementioned harridan is a big fan of the FCTC, the WHO organisation waging war on nicotine. If they say "Jump", she'll ask "How high?" and then move heaven and earth to get shot of all nicotine. ALL nicotine...

Just think on that.

An Open Letter to PHE and other “supporters” of ecigs and TRR. (Tobacco RISK Reduction)

You complain that public perception of ecigs is horrendously bad, but do you know whose fault that is?

Dear sirs, madams and those whose gender identity I’ve just offended,

You claim to be supporters of ecigs, but every statement you make is caveated. How? here’s a non-exhaustive list:

“Although not without risk…”
“If you have tried NRT unsuccessfully, you may like to try ecigs”
“Although they contain ADDICTIVE Nicotine”
“Ecigs CAN be a way of successfully quitting smoking”
“The best option is to neither smoke nor vape”

There are many, many more, of course, but that little list serves to exemplify why people are put off ecigs/vaping by your own actions.

Every last pronouncement comes with a caveat. A caveat that screams “Warning, Danger, Will Robinson”.

And yet, in private conferences, where the public won’t hear you, you say things like “Ecigs are safe enough for pregnant ladies”, “Folks smoke for the nicotine, but die from the tar”, “Nicotine is a relatively benign drug” - all  comforting, non-caveated, straightforward statements. Does the Press every get these uncaveated statements to copy and paste? No.

Why?

If you want ecigs to succeed in achieving your stated goals of countries, towns, regions, wherever, being smoke-free by whichever date is in vogue now, you need to change your ways.

Here are some statements you can use that will have a very positive effect on all of this:

1:”Ecigs have been shown to be non-threatening in terms of their users health - they’re safe enough to use for anyone who wishes to enjoy Nicotine”.

2: “Evidence has shown that there is no risk of passive exposure to anything harmful from the use of ecigs. Therefore, than can be no justifiable reason to ban their usage anywhere.

3:”People who wish to use ecigs need to know that they are highly unlikely to cause them any harm whatever. While further studies are likely to confirm that statement, we know enough now to happily accept their use in the general population”.

See how easy it is - and note, while not caveated, not one of those statements is either negative or untrue.

Adopt that style of language, forget any medicinal usage of any kind - it’s a negative in everyone’s mind, purely because no-one wants to be a patient - and always speak without evasion, prevarication, or mental reservations of any kind about ecigs, and you will achieve what you want to achieve. It really is that simple.

Thank you.

That word....

It's entirely possible I spend too much time thinking. Well, I've been thinking again, and here's why the "QUIT" word is unusable for ecigs.

Actually, the word that's most problematical is "Smoking", coupled with "Smoker". While "Smoking" nearly describes what we used to do, it falls short of the mark. In truth, we were nicotine users - much like a Heroin user, only, in this case, using a substance which is regarded by those who tell us they know these things which is pretty benign. Benign. As in not all that harmful, if it's harmful at all - after all, we have specific receptors for it in various parts of our body.
So, yes, we were nicotine users, who happened to be using nicotine parcelled up in a (again, according to the "experts) pretty noxious delivery system. Lit tobacco, that is. Did we use said nicotine medicinally? Nope - it was all about recreation (no matter what the CEO of ASH would have you believe).

And then along comes the ecig. Some of us switched brands from the lit variety of nicotine delivery to the aerosolised delivery format. In so doing, we got rid of the noxious part of the old delivery system, but we hadn't "quit" being nicotine users. We were still using nicotine, and not in a medicinal way. All we did was to change delivery system from noxious to, arguably, safe. Switched brands.

In the drugs harm reduction world, the analogue would be moving from injecting Heroin (very risky, and for a variety of reasons) to "chasing the dragon" (a kind of heat, not burn form of delivery, which is much, much less risky). In the drugs world, had we quit Heroin? Nope, had we hell - we'd simply switched delivery system to one posing much less risk of harm. This is not massively difficult to understand, is it?

Public Health and the "Q" word

Now, we all know the phrase "Quit or die". Public Health, as a movement, has, as long as I can remember, been on at nicotine users (note how I'm not using that tendentious term "smokers") to "quit". They didn't mean (and don't mean) "stop lighting tobacco" as much as "QUIT USING NICOTINE" - their aim was (and is) total abstinence. You just have to look at all the "oooh, it's an addiction, and addiction is bad" (tell that to the folks addicted to going to the gym - and yes, they are, the chemicals in their brains do that for them) to see this. It's never-ending. Their message has always been "be abstinent from nicotine". Even now, in the moderate ones, you'll see "While switching to ecigs is a good step, the ultimate goal is complete cessation".

THAT is what they mean by "quit". Switching is not good enough for them

Moreover, the big players, the ones who head up various of the alphabet organisations in Public Health (and some lobbying so-called "charities") are desperate to see so-called "medicinal" ecigs. Desperate. 

Now, whenever I see that kind of desperation, I start thinking. Why? Why are they so desperate?

And the answer shows itself fairly quickly, really. If ecigs are medicinalised, they are then, in truth, NRT. They're not recreational. They're not fun. They're intended for one thing only - quitting. Quitting on PH terms, IN PH terms. And they'd probably be as successful as NRT, the statistics for which they have to torture in order to make them look good - but we al know that NRT is a dismal failure at what it sets out to do.

And the alphabet orgs seem very happy with that dismal failure. Possibly because it keeps so many people in well-paid jobs, travelling the world, meeting in five star hotels and demonising ordinary people.

And here's the rub. Vapers worldwide are playing into their hands. "I've quit smoking". That word - "smoking". It REALLY means "using nicotine" - and have they? Nope.

But they have used the "quit" word. They've adopted PH's vocabulary. They're even trying to "help smokers quit" by introducing them to ecigs. Sometimes, it seems to me, forcibly. They even stigmatise nicotine users of the lit tobacco variety by referring to
"the horrible smell"
"I don't have to wash my clothes after a night out" (You mean you didn't have to wash them anyway, you dirty bugger?)
"I've been off the stinkies for X months now"

All very helpful to the PH and anti-nicotine cause. But not very helpful, at all, to the harm reduction cause.

Think on it...
 

Help or - in the long term - hindrance?

You may have heard of "The Truth Initiative". It's a research body in the US that, for we vapers at least, takes an interest in ecigs. Apparently they've done a survey and, having surveyed and spent countless millions of dollars to complete it, have some suggestions, observations and so on, upon which I feel the need to comment. Here's a pictorial snap of their conclusions:

1: Most current and former smokers correctly perceive e-cigarettes to be less harmful than traditional cigarettes:
Well, yes. If you believe the tobacco control cabal, that's not a particularly high bar. TTI (The Truth Initiative) missed out on the opportunity to convey the truthful notion that, statistically, it's also less harmful than pulling your trousers on standing up (many deaths per annum attributed to this seemingly innocuous activity), less harmful than motorcycling - and you can fill in a few more yourself.

2: A majority of those using e-cigarettes are using them to quit smoking:
Now I'm starting to get annoyed - didn't take long, did it?
Look, worldwide, no vape shop, either online or B&M, is allowed to claim the medicinal property of "smoking cessation device" for any ecig product, without having first applied for and obtained the equivalent of a marketing authorisation from the MHRA in the UK, FDA in the US or any other competent body. But bodies like TTI (and just about every so-called "friend" of vaping in Public Health) continually refers to "smoking cessation", "Quitting" and other terms that a vape vendor cannot legally use like it's what ecigs are all about. They've done this to the extent that even vape advocates have been taken in and are now openly and loudly shouting about "Helping Smokers To Quit" using ecigs. FFS - they've crossed the line and gone to the Tobacco Control side. It boils my piss. If this continues, ecigs WILL become medicinal devices - mark my words.

I'm not going to use the rest of the numbers - so bear with...

RISK
Look, nothing in this world is risk-free. Nothing. There is no such thing as 100% safe, truly. And we need, I think, to stop comparing the risk of ecig usage with the risk of smoking. We know enough now to know that the risk profile of vaping is lower than many normal everyday activities, because we have ten years of data (anecdotal, yes, but nonetheless valid for that) that has shown no deaths and no major trauma from the act of vaping. The same cannot be said for driving, motorcycling,  skiing, horse riding, pedal cycling - the list goes on. 
Of course, some bright spark will yell "battery explosions". Yell all you like. That's a diversion. Nothing whatever to do with vaping, battery incidents are battery incidents, just as a tyre iron falling on your foot has bugger all to do with biking or driving - it's a tyre iron incident, not a driving incident.
What vaping is is an entirely new category of activity that happens to also include nicotine usage. That's a lot like caffeine usage, the main difference being that one is inhaled, the other imbibed. After that, there's more or less no difference at all. There MAY be a risk involved in the inhalation part of the activity, but, if that is the case, then the MHRA, FDA, ASH and  Public Health bodies need to concern themselves with haze machines (yes, it's exactly the same stuff). Yet they don't. Why? because such machines and the atmospheres they produce have been extensively researched by lawyers, unions and union lawyers looking for ways to litigate and make a money grab. They have not found a foothold. The conclusion is obvious. No problem.

And that, I think, is what is boiling the piss of the alphabet orgs. There is no problem with ecigs. They're safe enough for anyone (with certain very rare exceptions) to use for any purpose - although that purpose will mostly be enjoyment.

We cannot escape what follows: people WILL take up ecigs purely for enjoyment. They need not be targetted solely at smokers. They are NOT a quit tool, no matter what the alphabet orgs are trying to get people to espouse. They are a tool for enjoyment that people can use for whatever purpose they see fit. That, in a very large number of cases, their use results in someone ceasing another activity, which other folks may or may not approve of, is a happy (for some) side effect. It is NOT the be all and end all.

I've seen a number of folks jumping on this survey and loudly proclaiming that this could be the saviour of vaping. Well, I'm sorry, but it isn't. It is the saviour of MEDICINAL vaping. It casts vaping as a smoking cessation tool. It does not acknowledge the pleasure principle, it does not acknowledge the individual's right to choose, it does not acknowledge the relative safety of vaping versus everyday activities that also carry a risk. It does nothing for vaping, and everything for tobacco control.

Realise that, and you realise exactly what Tobacco Control is attempting - to define the agenda and define what you will be allowed to use ecigs for. And, as vapers, as advocates, as individuals, we must reist that with every sinew.

Cinnamaldehyde and bollocks - THAT study...

It happens all the time. People - like one Doctor Helen O'Neil - open a twitter account, post some bollocks and then close it when they're challenged. It's the tactic of cowards, in my opinion, because they usually do it in order to escape critique and debate.

The above mentioned person has been the impetus behind a particularly egregious press release that has (almost word for word in two newspapers (a term I use lightly)) gained some traction and notoriety without one paragraph of the study to which it refers being published anywhere I can find.

Bottom lining the whole thing, it reckons that vaping such a flavouring as Cinnamon (the "chemical flavouring" for which is Cinnamaldehyde, also present in Cinnamon itself) renders a bloke's sperm immotile, or, at least, damaged such that his fertility is compromised.

The mechanism for this, of course, is that cinnamaldehyde enters the bloodstream via the lungs - it's being vaped - and travels bollock-wards in the bloodstream. According to the good doctor, that's where it wreaks havoc. It makes a bollock of the swimmers in the bollocks.

But hang on a mo. If you EAT cinnamon (also containing vast quantities of Cinnamaldehyde (did you like my use of the researcher's "vast" there?)) it, too, enters the bloodstream, and, given that it's in there, also heads bollock-wards, where it, too will etc.etc.etc.

Now, there's no need to get into bio-availability here, but I think I just might. I'm going to suggest that, in vapour, the amount of cinnamaldehyde present is really very low. Eaten, it's highly likely that there will be a greater quantity entering the body. How much of either will enter the bloodstream is, as far as I'm aware, unknown. Dr O'Neil should have studied that. As far as I know, she didn't. Given that she's actually an early career "expert" on reproductive mechanisms, if the vape scenario rang danger bells, she should, as a matter of urgency, in fact, have broadened the study to discover what could be vital information for those seeking to reproduce.

In other words, if there's a substance that adults (and cheeldrens) the world over imbibe, ingest, eat, swallow, vape or even breathe that can adversely affect their reproductive capabilities, then the world deserves to know.

But, of course, she hasn't gone there. Nope. SHe's just made sure that alarmist drivel about ecigs gets press released to as many papers as possible. Apparently, she's going to be presenting this load of bollocks to a conference around about now. The folks there will know nothing much about vaping. They're quite likely to take her word for it. Unless, of course, they get to see the study itself and can actually think.

UPDATE:

Professor Peter Hajek has had his say...

 

 And he knows. thankfully, other proper scientists are getting involved, too.

And he knows. thankfully, other proper scientists are getting involved, too.

Condoms - for you, me, and everybody

Nononono... not for willies or horizontal nudy prod. I'm talking for Lithium Ion batteries (or cells, for the purists).

When you go to buy a normal alkaline or whatever 1.5 volt or 9 volt battery at the garage, you're normally doing that because the ones in your TV remote or smoke alarm have gone flat. As a matter of course, you take the dead ones out and bin them, then get the new ones, unwrap them, and bung them into whatever it was that wasn't working. And that's it. The more prepared amongst us may have a spare pack of four in the kitchen drawer, in the bubble pack or a cardboard box.

It is vanishingly rare to hear of anyone carrying a couple of AAA or AA or even PP3 batteries around as spares. People just don't do it. Unless they're gigging musicians. They carry lots of spares. Usually in the blister pack they bought from the garage, or in bulk packs bought off the internet.

So, the fact is, most folks have little or no experience of carrying small tubes packed full of energy. They do NOT know just how energetic these things can be (yes, even alkaline ones). 

Now, we all know (or should know) that the bulk of thermal runaway events with lithium ion cells happen because said cell was dropped into a pocket or back full of coins and keys. There is a short circuit, the battery/cell overheats (often amazingly quickly) and there you have it - a pocket bomb, burned leg, side, hand - wherever happens to be in the firing line.

The simple cure? A battery condom or plastic secure carrying case.

Because folks are, as I have described right at the top of this piece, not used to carrying batteries safely, they should NEVER be supplied WITHOUT the protective case or condom. Ever. And there should be a notice on each individual cell, obscuring and insulating the terminals, informing the purchaser that every cell should be in its case or condom when it is not in use or being charged. And another bloody great big card/leaflet/notice separately confirming and reinforcing that.

Who does this scheme benefit?

The vendor, for one - because he has fulfilled his obligation of safety and warning. If all that's in place and so twonk drops a bare cell into his pants pocket, he can't say he wasn't warned. So no law suit.

The inexperienced user, for two. - because it may just stop them needing skin grafts, if they act on what they've been told - after all, they don't know they needs condoms or cases.

The rest of us, for three - because it'll help stop these bloody silly going postal events, which, in turn, will take the heat off those of us who have to educate folks...

Trust me, vendors - stick you logo on a condom that costs coppers, call it advertising (which you can do - it's not on telly) and NEVER EVER SELL A BATTERY WITHOUT A FUCKING CONDOM!

Stop blaming Big Tobacco - it's BIG PHARMA wants ecigs gone

I dunno - you think you've done your blogging for the day, then you get an email that sends shivers down your spine. It contained this, which I present for you to download... 
https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B-Twh7V7-0mSRFgxMDRiTXVvYlU

 

TLDR: Big Pharma wants Stop Smoking Service commissioners to stop SSSes from being ecig friendly, use only THEIR medicinally licensed NRT products and to insist on ALL clients being nicotine abstinent at 12 months.

It's directly contradictory to PHE guidance.

It contradicts NCSCT guidance

It contradicts upcoming and already extant NICE guidance

It's their attempt to get things back the way they were a decade or more ago, before NRT was licensed as a harm reduction strategy.

Expect the usual suspects - Capewell, McKee and Glantz to support it. Chapman won't. He doesn't like NRT almost as much as he doesn't like ecigs.

Theere you go - download it, read it, and realise that the tobacco companies aren't the ones trying to get ecigs banned. It is, and has always been, Big Pharma. THEY are the problem.

Shall we define "Safe"?

I keep seeing it, you keep seeing it - those anti-nicotine who say stupid things like "Yes, ecigs are safer than smoking, but they're not SAFE".

 Nothing is safe - really. The word "safe" ALWAYS needs a modifier.

Nothing is safe - really. The word "safe" ALWAYS needs a modifier.

Here's MY point... NOTHING is safe. Nothing. There is no such thing as "safe" in the real world.

Every instance of "safe" needs a modifier - even the definitions to the left there have modifiers - "Safe from marine predators" - but not devoid of all risks. "Not likely to lead to harm or injury" - again, implies zero risk, but the example given, crossing a river where it is "safe to do so" actually DOES involve risk.
So, in truth when we're talking ecigs, and we want to use the word "safe", I think we actually can. They are "safe" ENOUGH to satisfy the generally accepted definitions of "safe".

Is crossing a main road safe? Well, no, not absolutely. It always involves some risk. So, is NOT crossing the road safe? Nope, probably not, as it, too involves some risk (as in a bus, car, whatever may mount the kerb on the side you're on and hit you, so, for all its risks, crossing the road may have been safer in that scenario). So given two possible actions, neither is safe.

Enter the risk assessment. Anyone who has spent any time whatever working in the entertainment industry (or any other that involves folks actually doing things) will have conducted risk assessments. Since it's generally acknowledged that nothing can ever be described as "safe", we now have to assess the risks of doing absolutely everything. And I do mean everything. And then we have to mitigate or minimise those risks.
Guess what ecigs do! Yup - they mitigate and minimise the risks of using nicotine.

AND THEY'RE SAFE ENOUGH. SAFE ENOUGH TO BE CALLED "SAFE". OK?

So - the multiple coils and better Nic delivery thing

On Monday night on VTTV Monday I said I'd blog to explain why using multiple coils and higher wattage can have a sort of "milligrammage multiplying" effect. That is to say, how a 3mg liquid can satisfy a 24mg vaper, and why eight coils in an octocore with 6mg juice can keep me happy when I was using 45mg and higher e-liquid.

So, the basics. First, what is all this "mg/ml" stuff?
Well, simply put, if you have 1 millilitre of 6mg e-liquid, you have 6mg of nicotine. So a single ml of 24mg (2.4%) juice has 24mg of nicotine in it. 

Next uo, how do we get the nicotine into us? 
Again, not hard - a single coil in any e-cig is, basically, acting like a tiny kettle. It pumps heat into the liquid, and once enough heat is pumped into the liquid, it will evaporate. For us, this happens quite quickly, because we're talking small amounts of liquid and reasonably high power levels. Now, this is where the physics comes in, and where people start to get confused.

Latent heat of vaporisation/Boiling point.

Every liquid requires a different amount of heat to boil (become a vapour). It can be measured by the number of Joules per unit of volume it takes to do the deed. It's explained clearly here and is the basis for how multiple coil cores and atties work.

So, if one single coil can vaporise, let's say, 1ml of 6mg eliquid per minute at any given wattage (trying to keep it simple here!), then it will release 6mg of nicotine for someone to enjoy in that single minute. If you have eight coils, all at that same wattage, then, between them, they can vaporise eight times as much eliquid in that same minute - so between them would release 48mg of nicotine to be used and enjoyed.

Now this is where it gets interesting. A single Mouth to Lung draw has a volume of between 50ml and 100ml, so, even if you were using eight coils, you could only draw in a finite "volume" of vapour. Because those coils in the core produce a vapour that is "up to" eight times denser than the single coil (and this is very, very dependent on airflow - it's gonna be airy) you might think that you'd be getting eight times the 6mg - but, in all honestly, the likelihood it that you wouldn't.

Take the same setup, though, and get increased airflow, and then take it direct to lung, and, all of a sudden you're likely to have a system that has each of those eight coils producing at full capacity for long enough to allow you you suck nearly a litre of vapour into your lungs. And you will get close to achieving and eightfold increase in the amount of nicotine that's presented to your body.

This is why very few "Cloud Chasers" or DTL vapers use anything much beyond 6mg - the throat hit on 24mg juice in an octocore device would be tremendous. I could handle that on a dual coil, but, after trying it out a few times on higher numbers of coils, I can tell you it gets quite rough!!

So, to sum up, by multiplying the number of coils you use, you can make more nicotine available - it requires that each coil is being driven at the same wattage (power, actually, but it'll do) as it would be as a single coil, so if your single coil was running at 15 watts, the octocoil device would need to be at 8x15=120 watts in order to get close to an eightfold increase in nicotine availability.

And, in practice, that's pretty much what occurs. The more coils and power, the greater the availability of nicotine. Now, how it's absorbed is another question, and we're going to need someone like Lynne Dawkins or Konstantinos Farsalinos to do some applied research to answer that one.

Trusting souls with a vested interest

So, Philip Morris has launched IQOS into the UK (London for the moment, which is why I haven't got one in my hands right this very second). For those of you who don't know, IQOS is a "heat not burn" product - you, basically, slip a miniature tobacco stick, complete with filter, into a battery powered heating unit, and drag on it ,much as you would an exit or a fag. It's not rocket science for the user.

Not unnaturally, this launch has attracted a bit of publicity, not least because spokespeople for PM have intimated that, should IQOS technology prove to be popular enough, they may well look towards ceasing production of combustible cigarettes altogether. 

Yes, you read that correctly. PMI could, in the future, subject to the right market conditions, stop making fags. They've even said they're looking to working with Government to make that a reality. 

Now, if I was heading up an anti-smoking charity (which I'm not), I'd be happy as a pig in shit at that news. I'd be grabbing all my minions and despatching them to the Dept. of Health and various other top level bodies and doing my level best to, as Jean-Luc Picard would say, "make it so".

Cos that's what anti-smoking bodies and charities ought to be about, isn't it?

But no. No. "We don't trust the tobacco companies." "We're not in the business of promoting tobacco products" (which is, actually, very much missing the point - that the IQOS has tobacco in it is entirely specious to the argument - it can be demonstrated to be of much lower risk than smoking, so they SHOULD be promoting such things. You know, like they do with ecigs. Oh... wait...)

They're screaming for independent research into the risk profile. Here's an idea. They leech public money - yes, WE fund them - so let THEM, in the public interest (which it undeniably is) fund the research. Let THEM actually use the money they trough from the public coffers for a good purpose - get it given to an independent and unbiased lab to replicate the studies and confirm or deny the claims.

And when the risk profile is shown to be lower - much lower, I suspect - than combustibles, let them stop being haters in chief on the tobacco companies and actually start considering doping what they should have been doing all along - and that's fighting against the actual diseases they claim are caused by combustibles, and not fighting against the users of such products.

Just a thought.