Missouri confirms 2 vaping illnesses, studying 7 other cases

Henrietta Strickland
September 14, 2019

Troops may be at lower risk, as most of the cases reported vaping products containing tetrahydrocannabinol, THC, the psychoactive ingredient of marijuana, banned for use in the USA military.

Missouri health officials have confirmed two state residents are suffering from lung illnesses related to vaping, and seven other possible cases are being investigated. The first death linked to using electronic cigarettes was reported in IL on August 23.

US health officials on Thursday cut the number of lung illnesses linked to e-cigarettes and vaping products under investigation to 380 as states began assessing patients based on a narrower case definition issued late last month by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

There are hundreds more cases under investigation around the country, according to a CNN analysis of numbers reported by state health departments this week.

A focus in the investigation has been customizable "third-generation" vaping devices, which allow users to load in different liquids for vaping.

However, the CDC noted that, in some cases, patients had vaped only nicotine.

Health officials are urging people to avoid using e-cigarettes and THC vaping products amid the outbreak.

"It would be premature to say vitamin E acetate is driving these illnesses", Moore said.

CDC officials have said many who got sick said they vaped THC, but some said they vaped only nicotine. Six deaths have been confirmed in six states: California, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, and Oregon.

The CDC defines confirmed cases as patients who developed a breathing illness after vaping and underwent extensive testing that ruled out an infection.

The cases come amid an outbreak of similar illnesses across the nation.

Also this week, the government shared preliminary new data on the growing popularity of vaping in adolescents. That's up from about 21 percent in 2018, and 12 percent the year before.

The CDC's classification page for severe pulmonary illness with e-cigarette product use notes, "Based on available information, the disease is likely caused by an unknown chemical exposure; no single product or substance is conclusively linked to the disease".

The adult vaping rate has been much lower, at around 3 percent, and rising slowly.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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