Heating coils in electronic cigarettes and other vaping devices emit toxic metals like lead that are then inhaled by users, say researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore.
For this study, researchers analyzed vaping devices used by 56 daily e-cigarette users and discovered high, potentially unsafe levels of lead, chromium, manganese, and/or nickel in the vapor from the devices. Lung, liver, immune system, cardiovascular, and brain damage, and certain types of cancer have been associated with chronic inhalation of these toxic metals.
The study confirmed earlier research detecting low levels of metal in liquids in e-cigarette refilling dispensers, but significantly larger amounts in liquids that had been exposed to the heating coils within the e-cigarette tanks. The researchers also found that the metal contamination carried over to the inhaled vapor.