Tuesday January 28, 2020

Investigation of Vaping-Related Illnesses Focus on Products that Contain Marijuana Compound THC

But officials said they didn't know whether the THC was the problem or some other substance added to the vaping liquid

0
//
Investigation, Vaping, Illnesses
FILE - So far, investigators have not identified a particular device, liquid or ingredient behind the U.S. outbreak of severe vaping-related illnesses. VOA

U.S. health officials said Friday that their investigation into an outbreak of severe vaping-related illnesses was increasingly focused on products that contain the marijuana compound THC.

Most of the 800 people who got sick vaped THC, the ingredient in marijuana that causes a high, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But officials said they didn’t know whether the THC was the problem or some other substance added to the vaping liquid, such as thickeners.

“The outbreak currently is pointing to a greater concern around THC-containing products,” said the CDC’s Dr. Anne Schuchat.

So far, investigators have not identified a particular e-cigarette, vaping device, liquid or ingredient behind the outbreak. But officials say patients have mentioned the name Dank Vapes most frequently. Many of the people who got sick in Illinois and Wisconsin said they used prefilled THC cartridges sold in Dank Vapes packaging.

Investigation, Vaping, Illnesses
U.S. health officials said Friday that their investigation into an outbreak of severe vaping-related illnesses was increasingly focused on products that contain. Pixabay

No single store or distributor

“It’s a generic product name that doesn’t really tie back to one store or one distributor,” said Dr. Jennifer Layden, chief medical officer for the Illinois Department of Public Health.

“Folks are getting it from friends or folks on the street, with no understanding of where it came from prior to that.” she said Friday.

Until a cause is pinned down, the CDC continues to advise Americans to consider avoiding all vaping products, though the agency on Friday added the phrase “particularly those containing THC.”

Also Read- Hundreds of Thousands of People Joins Teenage Climate Activist Greta Thunberg for a March in Montreal

“We didn’t feel comfortable dropping the broader recommendation yet,” said Schuchat.

This week, the CDC reported 805 confirmed and probable cases of the lung illness. Thirteen people have died. Only the U.S. has reported such an outbreak, although Canadian officials this week confirmed that country’s first case.

On Friday, the agency provided more details in two reports:

— The first case in the U.S. began in late March. Cases ramped up in late June and rose dramatically in late July.

Investigation, Vaping, Illnesses
Most of the 800 people who got sick vaped THC, the ingredient in marijuana that causes a high, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Pixabay

— The median age of those who have become ill is 23. But the median age of those who have died is much older — 50.

— Nationally, 9 in 10 cases required hospitalization. Many young and previously healthy adolescents and young adults needed machines to help them breathe.

— In Illinois and Wisconsin, patients mentioned 87 different product names and many vaped more than one.

Similar to injury

Also Read- Now Order Allergy-Friendly Food With Uber Eats

Doctors say the illnesses resemble an inhalation injury. Symptoms have included shortness of breath, fatigue, chest pain, diarrhea and vomiting.

Officials continue to find a substantial numbers of U.S. patients — the new report says 16% — who said they vaped only nicotine, and not THC. But the report noted that in Wisconsin, five patients who initially denied using products with THC turned out to have used them.

The most illnesses have occurred in California, Illinois, Texas and Wisconsin. (VOA)

Next Story

Vaping May not Help with Smoking Cessation: Report

The report found that smoking cessation could reduce the risk of many negative health effects, including reproductive health outcomes, cardiovascular diseases, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and numerous cancers

0
vaping
Many people may be vaping nicotine through e-cigarettes, smoking. Pixabay

The US government released on Thursday its first smoking cessation report in 30 years, showing that there is inadequate evidence to conclude that e-cigarettes help quit smoking.

It is difficult to make generalizations about efficacy for cessation based on clinical trials involving a particular e-cigarette, according to the report.

E-cigarettes have long been embraced as a less harmful way to satisfy smokers’ nicotine addiction, but all-time high youth vaping in the country has prompted calls for action to stem their use, the Xinhua news agency reported.

A total of 3.6 million middle and high school students report that they used e-cigarettes in 2018, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) proposed premarket applications for all flavoured e-cigarette products that continue to be sold by Aug. 8, 2021.

The FDA suspended this month the sale of cartridge-based e-cigarettes in flavors other than tobacco or menthol.

American, Medical, Electronic Cigarettes
A man uses a vape as he walks on Broadway in New York City, September 9, 2019. VOA

Also, the report said cessation medications approved by the FDA and behavioural counseling could increase the likelihood of successfully quitting smoking, particularly when used in combination.

More than three out of five US adults who have ever smoked cigarettes have quit. However, less than one-third use FDA-approved cessation medications or behavioural counseling, the report said.

Cigarette smoking among American adults is at an all-time low (14 percent), according to the report. However, it remains the leading cause of preventable disease, disability, and death in the United States. Approximately 34 million American adults currently smoke cigarettes.

Also Read: Tinder Rolling out a Photo Verification Service to Curb Catfishing

The report found that smoking cessation could reduce the risk of many negative health effects, including reproductive health outcomes, cardiovascular diseases, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and numerous cancers.

“I’m calling on healthcare professionals, health systems, employers, insurers, public health professionals, and policy makers to take action to put an end to the staggering and completely preventable human and financial tolls that smoking takes on our country,” said Surgeon General Jerome M. Adams. (IANS)