Reports of vaping-related death – In the News

An Illinois man has died from a serious lung disease that he may have contracted as a result of vaping.

The USA’s Centers for Disease Control and Protection (CDC) confirmed the death on Friday local time, but have not released further details about the man.

The CDC has been investigating a cluster of severe pulmonary disease cases among people using e-cigaretes in the USA, with 193 potential cases reported since late June across 22 states. In a press briefing, CDC senior scientific advisor Dr Ileana Arias said the cause of the illnesses has not been identified, but patients had reported e-cigarette use, including the man who had died.

The Washington Post also reported the case of a 20-year-old man in Utah who became seriously ill in June, which his doctor suspected was linked to vaping.

University of Otago’s Professor Janet Hoek told RNZ New Zealand vape users shouldn’t panic following the death.

“We don’t know what’s going on in the US. There is some evidence that people have been vaping products that may have been brewed by themselves; ones that people are preparing essentially in their own kitchen.”

She said people who were buying and using certified products would continue to be safer than smoking. “It would be a pity for people to stop vaping and go back to smoking because smoking is still likely to be much, much more harmful for them than continuing to vape.”

University of Sydney Emeritus Professor Simon Chapman told the Australian SMC that the “full disaster of smoking’s health effects did not become apparent for 40 years after smoking became widespread” and it was too early to know the full risks of e-cigarettes.