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Adolescents and Young Adults Will Frequently Vape Both Nicotine and Cannabis

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Isabella Lanza, PhD   Associate Professor of Human Development   California State University, Long Beach 

Dr. Lanza

Isabella Lanza, PhD
Associate Professor of Human Development
California State University, Long Beach  

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: This is the first study to examine both nicotine vaping and cannabis vaping trajectories across adolescence and young adulthood, which allowed us to assess whether poly-substance vaping is common among adolescents and young adults. Poly-substance vaping (nicotine and cannabis vaping) was reported among a significant proportion of participants in the study (25% were identified as poly-substance vapers). For those that either escalated to frequent nicotine vaping use in adolescence or initiated frequent nicotine vaping use in young adulthood, the probability of engaging in cannabis vaping was very high (85%+).   

MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report? 

Response: Poly-substance nicotine and cannabis vaping appears to be the norm (compared to nicotine-only or cannabis-only vaping) for adolescents and young adults.

MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this work?

Response: One finding to note is that a significant proportion of individuals reported frequent nicotine and cannabis vaping in young adulthood but not adolescence. Although prevention strategies focused on adolescent vaping should remain prominent, efforts specifically addressing young adult vaping use may be warranted to substantially reduce nicotine and cannabis vaping.

MedicalResearch.com: Is there anything else you would like to add?

Response: We should be wary of increasing messaging targeted to young people that cannabis vaping is less risky or harmful than nicotine vaping, especially given the high likelihood that adolescents and young adults that vape one substance will vape the other.

No disclosures to report.


Lanza HI, Barrington-Trimis JL, McConnell R, et al. Trajectories of Nicotine and Cannabis Vaping and Polyuse From Adolescence to Young Adulthood. JAMA Netw Open. 2020;3(10):e2019181. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.19181

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Last Updated on October 7, 2020 by Marie Benz MD FAAD