Exposure to e-cigarette advertisements may enhance curiosity and usage among young adults, according to the study “Impact of Exposure to Electronic Cigarette Advertising on Susceptibility and Trial of Electronic Cigarettes and Cigarettes in US Young Adults: A Randomized Controlled Trial” published in the journal Nicotine & Tobacco Research.

Andrea Villanti, Director, Regulatory Science and Policy Schroeder Institute for Tobacco Research and Policy Studies, and the lead author on the study said:

“These findings highlight the potential impact of unrestricted e-cigarette advertising to enhance curiosity and trial of e-cigarettes in young adults.”

The study assessed more than 4200 young adults (ages 18-34) and the impact of random assignment to exposure to e-cigarette advertisements on e-cigarette perceptions, intentions, and subsequent use. Approximately 6 percent of young adults who had never before tried an e-cigarette had done so at six-month follow-up; ad exposure was associated with a greater likelihood of e-cigarette trial at follow-up (3.6 percent exposed vs. 1.2 percent unexposed) in never users of cigarettes and e-cigarettes. Ad exposure was also associated with greater curiosity to try an e-cigarette (18.3 percent vs. 11.3 percent) in the full sample. 

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