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Vaping and smoking among people aged 16-19 in England

Interested in taking part?

Please click here for details about the eligibility requirements and participant information.

We are now only recruiting people who only smoke OR vape.


Many people are concerned about vaping among young people. Recently, more young people in England have started vaping. We know little about what this does to their health. We would like to collect and analyse small amounts of urine from young people to find out more about health effects and compare young people who vape and/or smoke or do neither.

You can take part if:

  • You are 16-19 years old
  • Live in England
  • Smoke, vape, do both or do neither 

Why the study is needed

This study is of importance as in England there is very little research on vaping in young people.


This project is funded by the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) from 2020-2023.

Further Information 

What is the study about?

We will measure specific substances in the urine of 16-19-year-olds who smoke, vape, do both or neither. Higher levels of some of these substances are linked with health-related problems. This will help us learn more about any health risks of vaping compared with smoking and not using any products.

What will happen to me in the study?

If you meet the criteria to participate and agree to take part, we will ask you to:

  1. Join a brief video call with our researcher to confirm that you can take part, answer any questions you might have, and provide your postal address (~3 minutes).
  2. Complete an online questionnaire about your smoking and vaping behaviours and related information. This will take you ~10 minutes.
  3. Provide a urine sample at home. We will send you a urine sampling kit for you to complete at home. This will come with instructions on collecting the sample and sending it to the laboratory in the packaging provided for analysis. There will also be a 1-page questionnaire to fill in.
Will anyone know if I am vaping, smoking or using other substances?

No, the questionnaires will not have any information to identify you. Instead, we will use an ID number, so there will be no link between personal information and any information you send back to us. All information will be kept secure and with access only for the research team.

We ask about cannabis use. We only do that because using cannabis can create some of the same substances in your urine as smoking, and we need to take this into account. We do not analyse cannabis in your urine sample.

More information on how we handle data and confidentiality can be found here.

What are the possible benefits and risks?

Collecting urine at home is safe. Many studies have used the home collection kit we are using.

When we have received your questionnaires and sample, we will send you a £50 shopping voucher for your time.

Why is the study being done?

Vaping has become more popular, and there are many questions about the health effects of vaping. This study will help to answer some of these questions.

Who leads the study?

This study is led by Professor Ann McNeill at King's College London, London, United Kingdom. If you have any questions, please contact Ann and the team by email:

The work is funded by the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR).  It has been reviewed and received ethics clearance through the King's College London Psychiatry, Nursing & Midwifery Research Ethics Subcommittee (HR/DP-21/22-29811),

Project status: Ongoing

Principal Investigator


Contact us

For general queries about this project, please contact us by email:

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