The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is issuing a new warning about the use of e-cigarettes after a sixth person died from a mysterious lung illness that health officials and doctors believe may be related to the use of the electronic smoking devices. What once was marketed as a safe alternative to smoking cigarettes, is now being scrutinized as medical professionals and health agencies begin to look at if vaping is causing a deadly lung illness.
A new report cites sixth death believed to be linked to vaping.
On Friday, September 6, the CDC released an updated report on the outbreak of a severe pulmonary disease associated with the use of e-cigarette products (devices, liquids, refill pods, and/or cartridges). As of the time of this article’s publication, there have been six total reported deaths in the states of California, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, and Oregon. In addition, the CDC cites that over 450 possible cases of lung illness associated with the use of e-cigarette products have been reported to the agency across 33 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Is vaping causing a deadly lung illness?
In its report, the CDC states that no signs of an infectious disease have been found meaning that the cause of the illnesses is likely due to chemical exposure. Furthermore, the agency does not believe that a pulmonary infection is causing the symptoms because they are generally not improved with antibiotic treatment alone. The one factor that the patients share in common is the use of e-cigarette products.
Although most people associated the use of vaping and e-cigarettes with nicotine use, these devices are also used to inhale marijuana or other substances.
Notably, the CDC states, “The investigation has not identified any specific substance or e-cigarette product that is linked to all cases. Many patients report using e-cigarette products with liquids that contain cannabinoid products, such as tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).”
Signs and symptoms of the severe pulmonary disease reported by patients affected by the outbreak:
- Respiratory symptoms (cough, shortness of breath, or chest pain)
- Gastrointestinal symptoms (nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea)
- Non-specific constitutional symptoms (fatigue, fever, or weight loss)
The report also points out that some patients reported that their symptoms developed over a few days while others reported that symptoms developed over several weeks.
What to do next:
- The CDC is urging the public to cease using all e-cigarette products.
- If you are concerned about your health after using an e-cigarette product, call the poison control center at 1-800-222-1222.
- The CDC and FDA are encouraging individuals to submit detailed reports of any unexpected health or product issues related to tobacco or e-cigarette products via the Safety Reporting Portal.
The use of e-cigarettes is clearly an urgent and critical health matter. Both adults and teens are putting themselves at risk with the use of these products. At Panter, Panter, & Sampedro we urge you to consider stopping the use of e-cigarette products immediately.
If you or a loved one is severely injured or dies due to the use of a dangerous or defective product, you may be entitled to pursue a product liability claim. We invite you to contact our office to schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys by calling (305) 662-6178.