(HealthDay News) — More than 40% of pregnant women surveyed think electronic cigarettes are less harmful than tobacco cigarettes, according to a new study. The results of the study are scheduled to be presented at the annual meeting of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, held from May 2–6 in San Francisco.
The research team – led by Katrina Schafer Mark, MD, of the University of Maryland in Baltimore – surveyed 316 pregnant women visiting a university-based outpatient obstetrics and gynecology clinic in Baltimore.
Only 57% of the women believed that e-cigarettes contain nicotine. And fewer than two-thirds of the women thought that e-cigarettes could be addictive. The researchers also found that among the women in the study, 13% had ever tried e-cigarettes. Nearly three-quarters of the women who had tried e-cigarettes believed they were less harmful than tobacco. In addition, most of these women also said that e-cigarettes could help them stop smoking.
“All nicotine use during pregnancy should be avoided, whether the source be cigarettes, e-cigarettes, or nicotine replacement therapy products like nicotine gum and patches. Indeed, studies have shown that nicotine replacement therapy use by pregnant women is tied to low birth weight and preterm birth,” Gregory Conley, president of the American Vaping Association, told HealthDay.