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An updated Cochrane Review, led by a University of Oxford researcher, provides an independent, rigorous assessment of the best available evidence to date about electronic cigarettes for quitting smoking. The conclusions of this updated Review are unchanged since the last review was published two years ago: electronic cigarettes may help smokers stop their smoking, and the included studies did not find any serious side effects associated with their use for up to two years.

Woman using e-cigarette
Image credit: Oleg Baliuk/ Shutterstock Oleg Baliuk/ Shutterstock

The first Cochrane Review, published in the Cochrane Library in December 2014, showed that electronic cigarettes may be an aid to smokers in stopping their smoking. The updated Review did not find any new randomized controlled trials (RCTs) with long-term outcomes looking at the effectiveness of electronic cigarettes in helping people to stop smoking. However, this is an active area of research, with a large number of ongoing studies that will add to the evidence in the next few years.

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