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ST. LOUIS - E-cigarettes are a multi-billion dollar a year industry. They're the battery powered devices that heat liquid nicotine and send out a steam-like vapor instead of smoke.

Now the Food and Drug Administration has taken the first steps toward regulating them just like traditional cigarettes. That would mean minors wouldn't be able to buy them, free samples would be banned, and they'd have to carry warnings that they contain nicotine, which is addictive.

Dr. Michael Lim, director of the Division of Cardiology at Saint Louis University Hospital joined First @ 4 Friday.

Click the video player above to hear if e-cigarettes are harmless, like the makers say, and if they're any better than smoking a traditional cigarette.

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