Estimating the population health impact of introducing a reduced-risk tobacco product into Japan. The effect of differing assumptions, and some comparisons with the U.S.


Authored by  PN Lee*, S Djurdjevic, R Weitkunat, G Baker

Published in Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology    
 

* This author is not affiliated with PMI.
ABSTRACT

We estimated, using previously described methodology, the population health impact of introducing a reduced-risk tobacco product (RRP) into Japan. Various simulations were carried out to understand the impact on the population in different situations over a 20-year period from 1990. The overall reduction in tobacco-attributable deaths from lung cancer (LC), ischemic heart disease (IHD), stroke, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) for men and women combined was estimated to be 269,916 over the period if tobacco use disappeared completely at baseline. In contrast, reductions ranging from 167,041 to 232,519 deaths were estimated if the RRP totally replaced smoking at baseline (assuming that switching to it had an effect equivalent to 70%–90% of the effect of quitting). If, more plausibly, the RRP were introduced at baseline, with uptake rates consistent with the known uptake of the RRP IQOS®, the reductions would still be substantial (from 65,126 to 86,885 deaths). Expressed as a percentage of attributable deaths, these proportions are larger than those for the U.S., based on likely uptake rates. We discuss various limitations of the approach, though none should affect the conclusion that the introduction of an RRP into Japan will substantially reduce tobacco-related deaths.