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Tob Control. 2017 Dec;26(e2):e117-e126. doi: 10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2016-053462. Epub 2017 Jun 17.

Electronic cigarette use among US adults in the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) Study, 2013-2014.

Author information

Center for Tobacco Products, US Food and Drug Administration, Silver Spring, Maryland, USA.
Schroeder Institute for Tobacco Research and Policy Studies, Truth Initiative, Washington, District of Columbia, USA.
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland, USA.
Westat Inc, Rockville, Maryland, USA.
Department of Oncology, Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, Georgetown University Medical Center, Washington, DC, USA.
Center for Tobacco Studies, School of Public Health, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA.
Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, New York, USA.
National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Bethesda, Maryland, USA.



Electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) use in the USA is increasing. As such, it is critical to understand who uses e-cigarettes, how e-cigarettes are used and what types of products are prevalent. This study assesses patterns of current e-cigarette use among daily and non-daily adult users in the 2013-2014 Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) Study.


We examined the proportion of current adult e-cigarette users (n=3642) reporting infrequent use (use on 'some days' and use on 0-2 of the past 30 days), moderate use (use on 'some days' and use on >2 of the past 30 days) and daily use. We examined demographic characteristics, use of other tobacco products and e-cigarette product characteristics overall and by use category. Adjusted prevalence ratios (aPRs) were calculated using Poisson regression to assess correlates of daily e-cigarette use.


Among the 5.5% of adult current e-cigarette users in the PATH Study, 42.2% reported infrequent use, 36.5% reported moderate use and 21.3% reported daily use. Cigarette smokers who quit in the past year were more likely to report daily e-cigarette use, compared with current smokers (aPR=3.21, 95% CI=2.75 to 3.76). Those who reported using rechargeable or refillable devices were more likely to report daily use compared with those who did not use these devices (aPR=1.95, 95% CI=1.44 to 2.65 and aPR=2.10, 95% CI=1.75 to 2.52, respectively).


The majority of e-cigarette users in this study reported less than daily use. Compared with non-daily use, daily use was associated with being a former smoker; however, cross-sectional data limits our ability to establish the temporality or directionality of such associations.


Electronic nicotine delivery devices; Non-cigarette tobacco products; Surveillance and monitoring

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Conflict of interest statement

Competing interests: MLG received research grant from Pfizer and served as a member of advisory board to J&J, manufacturers of smoking cessation medications. RN served as an expert witness for plaintiff versus tobacco companies. WMC reports long-term stock ownership in General Electric, 3M Companies, and Pfizer unrelated to the content of this paper. No additional financial disclosures were reported by the authors of this paper.

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