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Several authorities, including the World Health Organisation, feel there is not enough evidence to recommend e-cigarettes for quitting smoking, A 2014 review found that e-cigarettes do not seem to improve cessation rates compared to regulated nicotine replacement products, and a trial found 29% of e-cigarette users were still vaping at 6 months, but only 8% of patch users still wore patches at 6 months.
The British Medical Association encourages health professionals to recommend conventional nicotine replacement therapies, but for patients unwilling to use or continue using such methods, health professionals may present e-cigarettes as a lower-risk option than tobacco smoking.
A 2014 systematic review concluded that the risks of e-cigarettes have been exaggerated by health authorities and stated that while there may be some remaining risk, the risk of e-cigarette use is likely small compared to smoking tobacco.
The authors warned against the potential harm of excessive regulation and advised health professionals to consider advising smokers who are reluctant to quit by other methods to switch to e-cigarettes as a safer alternative to smoking.A national US television advertising campaign starred Steven Dorff exhaling a "thick flume" of what the ad describes as "vapor, not tobacco smoke", exhorting smokers with the message "We are all adults here, it's time to take our freedom back." E-cigarette companies commonly promote that their products contain only water, nicotine, glycerin, propylene glycol, and flavoring but this assertion is misleading as scientists have found differing amounts of heavy metals in the vapor, including chromium, nickel, tin, silver, cadmium, mercury, and aluminum.