RESEARCH PAPER
Characteristics and outcomes of e-cigarette exposure incidents reported to 10 European Poison Centers: a retrospective data analysis
 
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1
Biomedical Research Foundation of the Academy of Athens (BRFAAA), Athens, Greece
2
Institute of Public Health, American College of Greece, Athens, Greece
3
Department of Primary Care and Public Health, School of Public Health, Imperial College London, London, UK
4
Poisoning Information Center, Estonian Health Board, Tallinn, Estonia
5
Dutch Poisons Information Center, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrech, The Netherlands
6
Swedish Poisons Information Center, Stockholm, Sweden
7
National Toxicological Information Center, University Hospital Bratislava, Bratislava, Slovakia
8
Institute for Medical Research an Occupational Health, Poison Control Center, Zagreb, Croatia
9
Poison Information Bureau, Health emergency situations center of the Ministry of health, Vilnius, Lithuania
10
National Institute Of Medical Emergency, Lisboa, Portugal
11
Poisons Information Center, Vienna, Austria
12
National Public Health Center, National Directorate of Chemical Safety, Health Toxicological Information Service, Budapest, Hungary
13
National Poisons Information Center, Beaumont Hospital, Dublin, Ireland
14
Laboratory of Toxicology, Medical School, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece
Publish date: 2017-08-16
 
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2017;15(August):36
KEYWORDS:
ABSTRACT:
Background:
The use of e-cigarettes has increased during the past few years. Exposure to e-cigarette liquids, whether intentional or accidental, may lead to adverse events our aim was to assess factors associated with e-cigarette exposures across European Union Member States (EU MS).

Methods:
A retrospective analysis of exposures associated with e-cigarettes reported to national poison centers was performed covering incidents from 2012 to March 2015 from 10 EU MS. De-identified and anonymous raw data was acquired.

Results:
In total, 277 incidents were reported. Unintentional exposure was the most frequently cited type of exposure (71.3%), while e-cigarette refill vials were responsible for the majority of the reported incidents (87.3%). Two-thirds of all exposures (67.5%) occurred as ingestion of e-liquids, which was more frequent among children (≤ 5 years, 6–18 years) compared to adults (87.0% vs. 59.3% vs. 57.6%, p < 0.001 respectively), exposure via the respiratory (5.4% vs. 22.2% vs. 22.2%, p < 0.001) were more frequent among paediatric patients while ocular routes (2.2% vs. 3.7% vs. 11.4%, p = 0.021) were more frequent among adults. Logistic regression analyses indicated that paediatric incidents (≤ 5 years) were more likely to be through ingestion (adjusted Odds Ratio [aOR] = 4.36, 95% Confidence Interval [C.I.]: 1.87–10.18), but less likely to have a reported clinical effect (aOR = 0.41, 95% C.I.: 0.21–0.82).

Conclusions:
Our study highlighted parameters related to e-cigarette exposure incidents in 10 EU MS, the results of which indicate that consideration should be given to the design features which may mitigate risks, thereby protecting users, non-users and especially children.

CORRESPONDING AUTHOR:
Constantine I. Vardavas   
Biomedical Research Foundation of the Academy of Athens (BRFAAA), Athens, Greece
 
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