Statutory warning: Cigars deliver more nicotine than cigarettes, says study

Cigars may have a reputation for being safer than cigarettes, but they may be just as harmful and addictive, researchers, including one of the Indian-origin, have warned.

A study by researchers at the Pennsylvania State University in the US shows that small cigars have just as much if not more nicotine than cigarettes.

They analysed the nicotine in smoke from popular brands of “small” or “filtered” cigars — that are almost identical to cigarettes except they are wrapped in leaf tobacco instead of paper.

In the study, published in the journal Nicotine and Tobacco Research, they found that the level of nicotine found in small cigar smoke is similar to or greater than cigarette smoke.

“There seems to be a perception in the public that cigars are not as harmful as cigarettes,” said Reema Goel, from the Pennsylvania State University.

“However, our study shows that nicotine is pretty high in this class of cigars, and future regulation that affects cigarettes should also affect these cigars,” Goel said.

According to researcher John Richie, the confusion surrounding the safety of cigars may stem from tobacco companies using clever tricks to get around current regulations.

“There are many misconceptions about cigars. The truth is, cigar smoke is inhaled and is just as harmful to the lungs,” Richie said.