Investigation of outbreak of lung injury related to e-cigs launched; 7 deaths confirmed; 530 cases of lung injury reported

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), state and local health departments, and other clinical and public health partners are investigating a multistate outbreak of lung injury associated with e-cigarette product (devices, liquids, refill pods, and/or cartridges) use.

Local officials are also warning you about the dangers of vaping.

According to CDC, there are 530 cases of lung injury reported from 38 states. Seven deaths have been confirmed in six states. More than 70% of cases are male; 67% of cases are 18 to 34 years old; 16% of cases are under 18 years; 17% are 35 years or older.

All reported cases have a history of e-cigarette product use or vaping, according to CDC.

Most patients have reported a history of using e-cigarette products containing THC. Many patients have reported using THC and nicotine. Some patients have reported the use of e-cigarette products containing only nicotine.

 

Local officials warn about the dangers

Local officials join CDC to warn you about the dangers of vaping.

“The bottom line for me on vaping is that our lungs are for processing air to oxygenate our blood,” said Mike Young, director of the Coffee County Anti-Drug Coalition. “Introducing harmful toxic chemicals into our bodies damages our lungs as well as having consequences for our health overall.”

The aerosols found in vapes contain many potentially harmful chemicals, lead, and heavy metals, added Young.

“While e-cigs have been marketed as a safer alternative to cigarettes, they have also become a new way to get addicted to even more harmful concentrations of nicotine. If used properly as a way to quit smoking, that’s great. But often, it’s merely switching addictions.

“I am also very concerned with some of the non-regulated and illegal substances that are being found in vapes. No one should buy THC or cannabinoid vaping products off the street. One, they are illegal. But also, the recent illnesses and deaths we have heard so much about lately seem to have come from these type substances. The vitamin E acetate found in the THC solution vaporizes and then reconstitutes in one’s lungs basically coating them with grease. It’s extremely dangerous, and quite frankly, the people selling these substances off the street have zero concern about the health of the people they are selling to.”