EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -- According to the American Cancer Society, tobacco use in the United States has changed rapidly in recent years, with millions of consumers now using electronic nicotine delivery systems.
The most common are electronic cigarettes.
A recent study published in the "Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences" found mice exposed to e-cigarette vapor experienced DNA damage to certain organs that could increase the risk of cancer and heart disease.
Mayo Clinic Health System says there's still plenty of uncertainty regarding the damage e-cigarette vapor can cause to a person's body over time.
“They are safer than tobacco smoking, but they are not safe,” says Dr. Sameer Batoo, oncologist at Mayo Clinic Health System.
Dr. Batoo says e-cigarettes contain products like nicotine and may have some toxic metals in them, but studies have not yet shown how they are going to affect the body long-term.
Local vaping shop, Iconic Vapers, urges cigarette smokers to try e-cigarettes if they’re looking to change their smoking habits, but do not recommend them for anyone who has never had nicotine in their body.
“It’s kind of a stepping stone,” says Jordan Oliver, employee at Iconic Vapers. “We're not saying that this is going to be 100 percent healthy, we're just saying it's a healthier alternative to other tobaccos out there. We want everyone to be healthy.”
Because there are still many unknowns and there is no scientific evidence that vaping is safe yet, Mayo Clinic Health System physicians urge e-cigarette users to be cautious.