The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and the US Food and Drug Administration Act (FDA), has been eyeing a common key chemical in the lung injuries caused by the use of vaping products.
What are Vaping Products?
Electronic cigarettes aka e-cigarettes, vapes, e-hookahs, vape pens, tank systems, mods, and electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS).
The use of e-cig products is also known as vaping.
E-cigs contraptions heat the liquid in the aerosol producing the vapes which are then inhaled into the lungs.
The liquid used may contain; nicotine, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabinoid (CBD) oils, and other substances and additives. THC is the psychoactive mind-altering compound in marijuana that produces the “high”.
Fluid samples collected from the lungs of some 29 injured persons found vitamin E acetate in all samples.
While vitamin E is often used in the production of e-cigarette, or vaping, products. No one substance has emerged as the causative culprit.
What is Vitamin E Acetate?
Vitamin E is of course a vitamin we all eat/use every day. It is a component of many foods such as vegetable oils, cereals, meat, fruits, and vegetables.
It is also used as a dietary supplement and for skincare.
Does not cause harm when ingested or used topically.
Vitamin E inhaled directly into the lungs interferes with its normal functions.
Is often substituted for THC.
Used as a thickening agent in the liquids used for vaping.
Several other product sources are still being tested.
Per the CDC and FDA, this is the first time that this chemical has been detected and there appears to be much cause for concern.
As always whenever possible the best practice is to stay away from cigarettes or other related inhaled substances.
CDC continues to caution against the use of e-cigarette and/or vaping products that contain THC, particularly from non-regulated suppliers, such as friends or family and face to face or online dealers. Updated information can be found on their website as it becomes available.
Recently the dangers associated with the use of vaping, e-cigarettes, pens, or Juuls (pronounced jewels) have been highlighted with an injury of some 530 persons across 38 US States and territories. Is reported that seven (7) persons have lost their lives resulting from the use of inhaled substances.
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), almost three-fourths of those affected are males with the prevalent age range being 18 to 34 years old. And what is even more alarming is the fact that 16% of the total cases are among young persons under the age of 18 years.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), some 3.6 million middle and high school kids used e-cigarettes in 2018, an increase of 1.5 million or greater than in 2017. There seems to be a common misconception among teenagers and even many adults that e-cigarettes are benign and harmless.
Of the affected cases all have reported a history of e-cigarette or vape use in the past but no evidence of respiratory diseases or other related comorbidities. There is not yet a specific cause of these lung injuries/deaths.