E-Cigarette Poisoning


E-cigarettes contain a liquid nicotine solution that can be poisonous. These products come in bright colors and appealing flavors and scents, making them particularly attractive to young children.

Print version of infographic with sources

Poster version of infographic


Nicotine is an acute toxin

Liquid nicotine can be harmful when swallowed or absorbed through the skin

Symptoms include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Increased heart rate
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Seizures
  • Death

Just a few drops of liquid nicotine could result in a trip to the ER

Lethality depends on the weight of the child and the concentration of liquid nicotine

Ingesting less than a quarter of a teaspoon of 1.8% concentrated liquid nicotine can be fatal to a 50 pound child

A Growing Problem[2]

Poison control centers reported a 145 percent increase in calls involving e-cigs and liquid nicotine between 2013 and 2014

E-Cigarette and Liquid Nicotine Exposures Reported to Poison Centers











More than half of these exposures occurred in children ages 5 and under

Safety Tips

Keep liquid nicotine and e-cigarettes locked up, out of sight, and out of reach

Make sure liquid nicotine is stored in child-resistant containers

Protect your skin when handling liquid nicotine

Program the poison control number into your phone and call immediately if skin contact or ingestion occurs: 1 (800) 222-1222


[1] Tobacco Control Legal Consortium. (2015). Policy Approaches to Prevent Liquid Nicotine Poisonings. Retrieved from: http://publichealthlawcenter.org/sites/default/files/resources/tclc-fs-e-liquid-nicotine-poisonings-2015.pdf

[2] American Association of Poison Control Centers. E-Cigarette Devices and Liquid Nicotine. Retrieved from: http://www.aapcc.org/alerts/e-cigarettes/