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Electronic Cigarettes (E-Cigarette)

What are electronic cigarettes?

  • Electronic cigarettes, also called e-cigarettes or vaporizer cigarettes, are battery-operated devices that release aerosolized nicotine that is inhaled by the user.
  • E-cigarettes vary in shape, size and general appearance. They often look like cigarettes, but can also look like other everyday items such as ballpoint pens.

Who uses e-cigarettes?

To date, there is no scientific evidence that e-cigarettes can be used to quit smoking. And, e-cigarettes have not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as smoking cessation devices even though some companies claim to help people quit.

Are there risks to using an e-cigarette?

Since e-cigarettes are not currently regulated by the FDA, there is the potential of many health risks:

  • Ingredients in the cartridges are not always known.
  • Some tests have shown high levels of nicotine and other harmful substances and chemicals.
  • The FDA has received many reports of harmful effects that might be related to e-cigarette use including pneumonia, heart failure and breathing problems (FDA).
  • More research is needed to assess both the risks and benefits of e-cigarette use.

E-Cigarettes can also be dangerous for children:

  • The liquid nicotine from e-cigarettes can cause serious health problems, including emergency room visits, seizures and even death.
  • Poison centers across the country are reporting a rise in the number of calls involving e-cigarette liquids.
  • Children might confuse the flavors of liquid nicotine for candy.

Are e-cigarettes legal in Colorado?

Sources: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Denver Public Health,, Americans for Non-Smokers Rights, FDA-Evaluation of E-Cigarettes, FDA-Public Health Focus, FDA-Consumer Updates.