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Inventing Conflicts of Interest, Coursework Example

Pages: 1

Words: 395

Coursework

E-cigarettes are a popular alternative method to the traditional cigarette, but they pose significant health risks of their own, and for cancer patients, these risks are particularly high. The project in question examined this phenomenon in order to determine how e-cigarettes present ethical issues for patients under the harm reduction theory. This project notes that there are conflicts of interest associated with many current studies, as a large number were funded by e-cigarette manufacturers (Pisinger & Dossing, 2014). From this perspective, it is difficult to address the true risks of e-cigarettes based upon prior research, which is similar to the problems related to cigarette smoking (Brandt, 2012).  Another area of concern is the continued emergence of new products, thereby making some studies obsolete (Etter, 2015), while others do not meet the criteria set forth in studies that involve the dangers associated with illegal drugs (Pepper & Brewer, 2014).

This project demonstrates that there is much controversy surrounding research regarding the safety, efficacy, and ethical framework of e-cigarettes. Therefore, this poses a serious threat to the integrity of these studies and their impact on understanding the true dangers and risks of e-cigarettes. The bias that has been established in some prior studies reflects a need to address harm reduction more closely and how e-cigarettes are evaluated relative to their true impact on health. It is also important to note that e-cigarettes are often viewed as less harmful than traditional cigarettes, but that they still pose a threat and must be taken seriously in this regard. The project has evolved with a positive approach to understanding the issues related to e-cigarettes, but relative bias in prior studies does appear to cloud judgment and perceptions regarding these products. Therefore, it is necessary to develop a new strategy to identify their relative risks without relying on biased studies that have been influenced by close ties to the e-cigarette industry.

References

Brandt, A. M. (2012). Inventing conflicts of interest: A history of tobacco industry tactics. American Journal of Public Health, 102(1), 63-72. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2011.

Etter, J. (2015). E-cigarettes: Methodological and ideological issues and research priorities. BMI Medicine, 13(32), 1-3. doi:10.1186/s12916-014-0264-5

Pepper, J. K., & Brewer, N. T. (2014). Electronic nicotine delivery system (electronic cigarette) awareness, use, reactions and beliefs: A systematic review. Tobacco Control, 23(5), 375-384. doi:10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2013-051122

Pisinger, C., & Dossing, M. (2014). A systematic review of health effects of electronic cigarettes. Preventive Medicine, 69(2014), 248-260. doi:10.1016/j.ypmed.2014.10.009

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