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CDC: Vaping-related lung injuries top 2,000 :

November 7, 2019

Two more people have died after vaping and 163 more have experienced vaping-related lung injuries, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported in its weekly update on Thursday.

These cases bring the death toll to 39 and patient count to 2,051.

Cases have been reported in every state except Alaska. About 70% of patients have been male and the median age is 24, according to CDC data from mid-October. Among the 39 who have died, the median age is 53.

As of Oct. 15, about 86% of patients had used a product containing tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and 64% used a product containing nicotine. Just over half used both.

“The latest national and state findings suggest products containing THC, particularly those obtained off the street or from other informal sources (e.g., friends, family members, illicit dealers), are linked to most of the cases and play a major role in the outbreak,” the CDC said on its website.

Still, the agency says it has not pinpointed the cause of the outbreak and continues to investigate different products and substances.

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.

The CDC has created a case form to assist with reporting probable or confirmed cases and also developed guidance for coding these encounters.

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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