ATLANTA, Nov. 5, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Nearly 80% of patients with lung injury related to use of e-cigarette, or vaping, products are younger than 35 years old. More than half are under 25!The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) together with state and local health departments and federal partners including the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) continues investigating this national outbreak of lung injury associated with the use of e-cigarette, or vaping, products. This complex investigation spans almost all states, involves almost 2,000 patients, and includes a wide variety of brands and substances and e-cigarette, or vaping, products. Case counts continue to increase, and new cases are being reported, which makes it more difficult to determine the cause or causes of this outbreak. At this time, FDA and CDC have not identified the cause or causes of the lung injuries in these cases; however, CDC has shared recommendations to keep the public safe.
At this time, FDA and CDC have not identified the cause or causes of the lung injuries in these cases, and the only commonality among all cases is that patients report the use of vaping products, including e-cigarettes. No one compound or ingredient has emerged as the cause of these illnesses to date; and it may be that there is more than one cause of this outbreak. We do know that THC is present in most of the samples tested by FDA to date, and most patients report a history of THC-containing products. 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.
As such, we recommend that you do not use e-cigarette, or vaping, products that contain THC. And since the specific cause or causes of lung injury are not yet known, the only way to assure that you are not at risk while the investigation continues is to consider refraining from use of all e-cigarette and vaping products. Adults using e-cigarettes to quit smoking should weigh all risks and benefits and consider utilizing FDA approved nicotine replacement therapies. They should not turn to or resume using combustible tobacco. There is no safe tobacco product. All tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, carry a risk.
Anyone who uses e-cigarette, or vaping, products should be on the lookout for symptoms and should see a doctor ASAP if you have any. Symptoms of lung injury associated with use of e-cigarette, or vaping, products include cough, shortness of breath, chest pain, nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, diarrhea, fatigue, fever, & weight loss. These symptoms might look like common illnesses like flu or pneumonia. If you use these products, talk to a healthcare provider if you feel sick, and be open about your e-cigarette, or vaping, product use. Early diagnosis and appropriate treatment are essential.
If you are a youth or adult who is trying to quit smoking, contact your healthcare provider if you need help quitting tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, and consider using evidence-based treatments, including counseling and FDA-approved medications.
If you are a youth or adult who is addicted to marijuana, effective treatments are available, and recovery is possible. To find treatment resources, you can talk to your health care provider, visit Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's (SAMHSA) at https://findtreatment.samhsa.gov/ to locate treatment in your area, or call 1-800-662-HELP (4357). If people continue to use e-cigarette, or vaping, products, they should carefully monitor themselves for symptoms and see a healthcare provider immediately if symptoms develop.
CDC will continue to update guidance as new data emerges from this complex outbreak.