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LETTER: Health Consequences of Eclipse Cigarettes 

Vol. 284 No. 23, December 20, 2000
Jump to full article: Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), 2000-12-19
Author: Gary T. Burger, DVM; James E. Swauger, PhD / Michael J. Thun, MD, MS; Thomas J. Glynn, PhD

Intro:

  • At R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, we are committed to developing new cigarettes that have the potential to present less health risk to smokers. However, no cigarette is without risk, including Eclipse. . . In short, exposure of Eclipse smokers to continuous filament glass is extremely unlikely to occur at a level that may be construed to be of biological significance. A safety assessment addressing this topic has been published.6

  • In Reply: Drs Burger and Swauger do not substantively address any of the major criticisms of R. J. Reynolds' new Eclipse brand cigarette. . . Notably absent from the authors' comments is any discussion as to why Eclipse "cigarettes" should not be considered smoke-flavored nicotine delivery devices, subject to jurisdiction by the FDA, as we believe they should be.

    Second, none of the industry-sponsored studies mentioned by Burger and Swauger provides convincing evidence that smokers who switch to Eclipse will experience a lower risk of cancer or other smoking-related diseases than those who do not. . .

    No one can dispute that "the best choice for smokers who worry about their health is to quit." Rather than Eclipse, however, "the next best choice" for a smoker involves medical counseling on the broad array of evidence-based pharmacological and behavioral approaches available to treat tobacco dependence.5

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