A recent study conducted in Switzerland has revealed promising results when it comes to using electronic cigarettes as a tool to quit smoking. The research, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, is the largest clinical trial to date on the effectiveness of vaping in smoking cessation.


The study, called ESTxENDS (Efficacy, Safety, Toxicology of Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems), involved more than 1,200 participants in five Swiss cities (Berne, Geneva, Lausanne, St. Gallen and Zurich). The participants, aged 38 on average, had been regular smokers since their teens.

They were randomly divided into two groups : those receiving an electronic cigarette and those receiving standard advice on how to quit smoking.

Vaping, Quit smoking, Swiss study


Half of the participants received a free electronic cigarette along with a selection of e-liquids. The e-liquids were picked by the participants after they had a chance to taste the six flavours available, including two classics, one menthol and three fruity.

In addition, participants were free to choose their nicotine level after testing the different rates : 19.6 mg/ml, 11 mg/ml, 6 mg/ml and 0 mg/ml.

Electronic cigarette, E-cigarette, New England Journal of Medicine

The other half, acting as a control group, received standard advice to help them give up smoking. The results were monitored over a six-month period, with regular visits and calls to help participants through the process.


The results showed that participants in the e-cigarette group were 1.77 times more likely to succeed and quit smoking than those in the control group. Around 29% of e-cigarette users managed to stay smoke-free for at least six months, compared to only 16% in the control group. These findings confirm those of previous studies, affirming that e-cigarettes are currently the most effective smoking cessation tool on the market.

Smoking cessation, E-liquids, Nicotine

Encouragingly, participants who used e-cigarettes reported fewer respiratory symptoms than those in the control group. The researchers have announced that the participants will be monitored for five more years, with intermediate assessments after one and two years.

Unfortunately, one participant in the control group died of lung cancer during the study, a reminder of the health importance of such research.


Like any scientific study, this one has certain limitations. The participants were aware of their group assignment, which could have led to disappointment among those in the control group.

In addition, the control group did not receive free nicotine substitutes, although monetary compensation was provided. As a result, the researchers cannot predict whether smoking abstinence will be maintained for longer in the vaping group.


Compared with previous studies, this research is unique in that it involves a larger number of participants.

In addition, it differs from studies conducted outside the EU because it complies with Swiss regulations in line with EU standards regarding nicotine concentration (limited to a maximum of 20 mg/ml) and the bottle size (limited to a maximum of 10 ml).


This Swiss study represents a major step forward in the acknowledgement of vaping as an effective smoking cessation method.

These results could prompt the health authorities to reconsider their position on the use of electronic cigarettes in smoking cessation, thereby offering new options to smokers wishing to end their tobacco addiction.