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Third vaping-related death in Illinois

Thursday, Oct 31, 2019

* Press release…

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is reporting the death of a third Illinois resident who had recently vaped and been hospitalized with a severe lung injury. At this time, a total of 166 people in Illinois, ranging in age from 13 to 75 years old, with a median age of 22, have experienced lung injuries after using e-cigarettes or vaping. IDPH continues to work with local health departments to investigate another 42 possible cases in Illinois.

“The unfortunate death of a third Illinois resident underscores the seriousness of these lung injuries,” said IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike. “New cases continue to be reported in Illinois and across the country. IDPH is urging Illinoisans not to vape or use e-cigarettes products, especially illicit THC based products, while we continue to investigate this outbreak.”
At this time, no single compound or ingredient used in e-cigarette, or vaping products has been identified as the cause of this outbreak. The latest national and state findings suggest products containing tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), particularly those obtained off the street or from other informal sources (e.g. friends, family members, illicit dealers), are linked to most of the cases and play a major role in the outbreak. More than 80% of the cases in Illinois report recent use of THC-containing products, primarily obtaining them from informal sources. Additionally, almost half of the cases in Illinois have also used nicotine-based products.

Affected individuals have experienced respiratory symptoms including cough, shortness of breath, and fatigue. Many have also experienced gastrointestinal symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea. Some patients reported that their symptoms developed over a few days, while others have reported that their symptoms developed over several weeks.

To date, IDPH has received 46 preliminary laboratory results on vaping products and devices submitted to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Almost half of the test results were positive for THC, and of those, approximately 40% had evidence of vitamin E acetate. The FDA continues to perform additional testing.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) arrived in Illinois on August 20 to assist with the investigation. IDPH is also working with local health departments, other state health departments, and the FDA to investigate the names and types of e-cigarettes, vaping products, and devices, as well as where they were obtained.

At this time, health officials have not identified the cause or causes of the lung injuries with the only commonality among all cases being patients report the use of vaping products, including e-cigarettes. No one device, compound, or ingredient has emerged as the cause of these illnesses to date; and it may be that there is more than one cause of this lung injury.

Cases have been reported in 32 counties statewide. In order to protect the identity of the affected individuals, additional information is not being provided. The investigation is ongoing, and more information will be shared as soon as it becomes available.

People who experience any type of chest pain or difficulty breathing after using e-cigarettes or vaping should seek immediate medical attention. When seeking medical attention, be sure to tell the provider you have vaped in recent weeks or months. Health care providers caring for patients with unexpected serious respiratory illness should ask about a history of vaping or e-cigarette use. [Emphasis added.]

- Posted by Rich Miller        

11 Comments
  1. - Cubs in '16 - Thursday, Oct 31, 19 @ 3:47 pm:

    “At this time, no single compound or ingredient used in e-cigarette, or vaping products has been identified as the cause of this outbreak.”

    Vaping is akin to playing Russian Roulette. And it’s killing users much more quickly than cigarettes which usually do so slowly over decades.


  2. - TiredofIt - Thursday, Oct 31, 19 @ 4:27 pm:

    And how many people died from tobacco to date this year?


  3. - 85 Bears - Thursday, Oct 31, 19 @ 4:32 pm:

    These products are not approved by FDA, kids get hooked early. Now they are dying. Where is the urgency to take decisive action.


  4. - Plutorat03 - Thursday, Oct 31, 19 @ 5:01 pm:

    Seems to be a relationship between problems and third party vaping supplies. No reports that I have seen are associated with major manufacturer’s refills.

    Users should be very wary of products with cool names and not associated with a known supplier.


  5. - M - Thursday, Oct 31, 19 @ 5:01 pm:

    Juul brand Vape knowingly shipped out a million contaminated vapors - - they know what is causing the health problems, but they don’t care. I read this in a news brief I get online, but I get so many that don’t remember the name of the article. Sorry


  6. - Anon - Thursday, Oct 31, 19 @ 5:07 pm:

    Just slap a “may kill you” sticker on it and treat it like cigarettes.


  7. - From lake county - Thursday, Oct 31, 19 @ 5:46 pm:

    There is insufficient public health research about vaping products. And relying on the vaping industry to conduct research is foolhardy as they are conflicted. The products should be suspended until public health information comes to the fore. Consumers need to know the risks. Whatever on thinks about tobacco, the risks at this point are well understood.


  8. - Nearly Normal - Thursday, Oct 31, 19 @ 6:42 pm:

    M–https://finance.yahoo.com/video/juul-accused-shipping-1-million-190532366.html


  9. - Unpopular - Thursday, Oct 31, 19 @ 9:32 pm:

    Just in time for legal weed. God help us.


  10. - efudd - Friday, Nov 1, 19 @ 8:11 am:

    Unpopular-
    God doesn’t have to help you make the decision to use, or not use, these products.

    Here, you dropped your hankie.


  11. - Just Saying - Friday, Nov 1, 19 @ 8:13 am:

    Third vaping death - big deal. How many abortions so far this year?


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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