Key Facts about Use of E-Cigarette, or Vaping, Products
Electronic cigarettes—or e-cigarettes—are also called vapes, e-hookahs, vape pens, tank systems, mods, and electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS).
Using an e-cigarette is commonly called vaping.
E-cigarettes work by heating a liquid to produce an aerosol that users inhale into their lungs.
The liquid can contain: nicotine, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabinoid (CBD) oils, and other substances, flavorings, and additives. THC is the psychoactive mind-altering compound of marijuana that produces the “high.”
Some of these products contain antifreeze / engine coolant. These products are harmful and can cause death if used improperly. Prolonged exposure or high concentrations of vapor or mist may cause mild irritation of the respiratory respiratory and headache, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, drowsiness, disturbances of the central nervous system, involuntary eye irritation. If swallowed may cause death if not given emergency services.
Vitamin E acetate is used as an additive, most notably as a thickening agent in THC-containing e-cigarette, or vaping, products.
Vitamin E is a vitamin found in many foods, including vegetable oils, cereals, meat, fruits, and vegetables. It is also available as a dietary supplement and in many cosmetic products, like skin creams.
Vitamin E acetate usually does not cause harm when ingested as a vitamin supplement or applied to the skin. However, previous research suggests that when vitamin E acetate is inhaled, it may interfere with normal lung functioning.
Latest Outbreak Information From The CDC:
This complex investigation spans all states, involves over 2,500 patients, and a wide variety of brands and substances and e-cigarette, or vaping, products.
As of December 3, 2019, CDC is only reporting hospitalized EVALI cases and EVALI deaths regardless of hospitalization status. CDC has removed non-hospitalized cases from previously reported case counts. See Public Health Reporting for more information.
As of December 17, 2019, a total of 2,506 cases of hospitalized e-cigarette, or vaping, product use-associated lung injury (EVALI) have been reported to CDC from 50 states, the District of Columbia, and two U.S. territories (Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands).
Fifty-four deaths have been confirmed in 27 states and the District of Columbia (as of December 17, 2019): Alabama, California, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and Virginia
The median age of deceased patients was 52 years and ranged from 17 through 75 years (as of December 17, 2019).
More deaths are currently under investigation.
Data suggest the outbreak peaked in September 2019. However, states continue to report new cases, including deaths, to CDC on a weekly basis.
Among cases of hospitalized EVALI patients reported to CDC with available data (as of December 3, 2019): 67% were male (among 2,155 patients with data on sex)
78% were under 35 years old, with a median age of 24 years and age range from 13 to 77 years (among 2,159 patients with data on age)
By age group category: 16% of patients were under 18 years old;
38% of patients were 18 to 24 years old;
24% of patients were 25 to 34 years old; and
23% of patients were 35 years or older.
1,782 hospitalized patients had complete information* on substances used in e-cigarette, or vaping, products in the 3 months prior to symptom onset, of whom (as of December 3, 2019): 80% reported using THC-containing products; 35% reported exclusive use of THC-containing products.
54% reported using nicotine-containing products; 13% reported exclusive use of nicotine-containing products.
12% reported using cannabidiol (CBD)-containing products; 1% reported exclusive use of cannabidiol (CBD)-containing products.
40% reported both THC- and nicotine-containing product use.
5% reported no THC-, nicotine-, or CBD-containing product use.
Among hospitalized EVALI patients who reported using THC-containing e-cigarette, or vaping product brands: The most commonly reported product brand included Dank vapes (56%), followed by TKO (15%), Smart Cart (13%), and Rove (12%). However, regional differences in THC-containing product use were noted.
CDC has analyzed national data on use of THC-containing product brands by e-cigarette, or vaping, product use-associated lung injury (EVALI) patients. Overall, 152 different THC-containing product brands were reported by EVALI patients.
Dank Vapes, a class of largely counterfeit THC-containing products of unknown origin, was the most commonly reported product brand used by patients nationwide, although there are regional differences. While Dank Vapes was most commonly reported in the Northeast and South, TKO and Smart Cart brands were more commonly reported by patients in the West and Rove was more common in the Midwest.
The data further support that EVALI is associated with THC-containing products and that it is not likely associated with a single THC-containing product brand.
CDC and FDA recommend that people should not use THC-containing e-cigarette, or vaping, products, particularly from informal sources like friends, family, or in-person or online sellers.
Vitamin E acetate should not be added to e-cigarette, or vaping, products. Additionally, people should not add any other substances not intended by the manufacturer to products, including products purchased through retail establishments.
CDC, FDA, and state health authorities have made progress in identifying substances of concern in EVALI. However, there are many different substances and product sources that remain under investigation, and there may be more than one cause.
The latest national and state data from patient reports and product sample testing suggest THC-containing e-cigarette, or vaping, products, particularly from informal sources like friends, family, or in-person or online dealers, are linked to most of the cases and play a major role in the outbreak.
While it appears that vitamin E acetate is associated with EVALI, there are many different substances and product sources that are being investigated, and there may be more than one cause.
Therefore, the best way for people to ensure that they are not at risk while the investigation continues is to consider refraining from the use of all e-cigarette, or vaping, products.
Stop Vaping Today. You just may save your lungs!!!