E-cigs connected to new lung disease

Zoe Leighter, Opinion Co-Editor

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Vaping is becoming a new epidemic. According to The New York Times vaping started on the market around 10 years ago and is a 2.6 billion dollar industry and this is just in the US.

On September 19th it was reported from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that there were 530 cases of lung illness because of vapes. 16% of the people with these lung illnesses are under the age of 18. As of then the numbers have only gone up. So far, 8 people have died from vape related issues. So far there has been no infectious cause to the people getting sick from vaping so they are alluding to the lung problems being from chemical exposure. The numbers for people getting sick and dying from these related issues just keep rising.

It is not yet sure what exactly is causing illnesses, it is not yet linked to a certain brand or substance. 

“All patients have a reported history of e-cigarette product use, and no consistent evidence of an infectious cause has been discovered. Therefore, the suspected cause is a chemical exposure,” said cdc.gov. 

CDC is recommending that people should stay away from vaping or e-cigarettes until they figure out the cause for all of these lung illnesses. 

“Anyone who uses an e-cigarette or vaping product should not buy these products (e.g., e-cigarette or vaping products with THC or CBD oils) off the street, and should not modify or add any substances to these products that are not intended by the manufacturer,” said cdc.gov. 

Many of the people getting these illnesses are not getting regulated vaping products, they are buying them off of the street or buying them online. A lot of the cases also include THC and other oils that are not regulated or are not from an official dispensary. Therefore, they do not know what is in these vape products that they are receiving and are getting sick from inhaling the product. 

Another big issue when it comes to vaping is all of the underage kids getting ahold of vapes.

“Youth use of tobacco products in any form is unsafe, irrespective of whether it is smoked, smokeless, or electronic. If cigarette smoking continues at the current rate among youth in this country, 5.6 million of today’s Americans younger than 18 will die early from a smoking-related illness. That’s about 1 of every 13 Americans aged 17 years or younger alive today,” said cdc.gov. 

Overall, people are continuing to get sick due to vaping related issues and there is no certain cause to exactly why it is happening, and has become a new epidemic.