There are currently more than 450 reported possible cases of lung illness associated with vaping in the US.
The Trump administration is moving toward a ban of flavored e-cigarette products as reports of vaping-related illness and even a handful of fatalities have surfaced across the United States.
“The Trump administration is making it clear that we intend to clear the market of flavored e-cigarettes to reverse the deeply concerning epidemic of youth e-cigarette use that is impacting children, families, schools and communities,” said Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar in a statement.
18 With The Lungs Of A 70-Year-Old
Increasingly, new cases of severe lung damage and lung disease related to vaping have emerged. The symptoms are severe. One 17-year-old woman in Texas came down with a fever and “pneumonia in both lungs,” forcing her on life support. She had vaped for two years in lieu of smoking cigarettes, her mother told Fox4News.com.
Another 18-year-old man from Illinois was hospitalized in late August after falling ill with “nonstop” vomiting. A review of his lungs revealed “the full damage.” Now his lungs resemble those of a 70-year-old person, he was told. He had vaped both nicotine and THC cartridges for more than a year and a half.
These are just two examples of the slew of reports coming in.
Tobacco-Flavored Products Are Okay…For Now
Azar said that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is currently finalizing a compliance policy to remove flavored e-cigarettes, including mint and menthol, from the market. Tobacco-flavored products will not be affected, unless “we find that children start surging into tobacco-flavored e-cigarettes or if we find marketing practices that target children and try to attract them into tobacco-flavored e-cigarettes,” said Azar. In that case, “we will engage in enforcement actions there also.”
This month, Michigan became the first state to ban flavored e-cigarette products. Boulder, Colorado did the same this summer as well as San Francisco, which became the first city in the U.S. to ban the sale and distribution of all e-cigarette products.
As of Thursday morning, CNN reported a sixth person dead, a woman from Kansas, from lung disease related to vaping. The other fatalities were reported in California, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota and Oregon.
As of last Friday, there were more than 450 reported possible cases of lung illness associated with vaping across 33 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
“The tremendous progress we’ve made in reducing youth tobacco use in the U.S. is jeopardized by this onslaught of e-cigarette use,” said Acting FDA Commissioner Ned Sharpless, MD. “Nobody wants to see children becoming addicted to nicotine, and we will continue to use the full scope of our regulatory authority thoughtfully and thoroughly to tackle this mounting public health crisis.”