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CDC: Vaping-related lung injuries grow to 1,479 patients, 33 deaths :

October 17, 2019

An additional 180 cases of vaping-related lung injuries have been reported in the past week, bringing the case count to 1,479 with 33 deaths.

About 70% of patients have been male, and 79% are under 35 years. Patients who have died have ranged in age from 17 to 75 years with a median age of 44, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Lung injuries have been reported in every state except Alaska. Deaths have been reported in 24 states.

Among 849 patients with information on substances they used in e-cigarette products, about 78% reported using tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)-containing products with or without nicotine; 31% reported exclusive use of THC-containing products; 58% used nicotine-containing products with or without THC; and 10% reported exclusive use of nicotine-containing products.

The CDC hasn’t been able to pinpoint a specific product or device responsible for the illnesses and is continuing to investigate. It is expanding its laboratory testing of patient specimens and is working to test aerosol emissions.

Patients have complained of difficulty breathing, shortness of breath and/or chest pain. Some also experienced diarrhea, vomiting, fever and fatigue, according to the CDC.

The CDC encourages clinicians to consider vaping-related illnesses in patients with lung disease, collect detailed information on the products patients were using and report suspected cases to their state health department.

Detailed guidance from the CDC is available at https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/68/wr/mm6841e3.htm?s_cid=mm6841e3_w.

For information about the collection of e-cigarette products for possible testing by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), email FDAVapingSampleInquiries@fda.hhs.gov.

The CDC also encourages the public to report any unexpected tobacco or e-cigarette-related health or product issues to the FDA’s online Safety Reporting Portal, http://www.safetyreporting.hhs.gov.

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