HealthDay News — The number of confirmed or suspected severe lung illnesses linked to vaping has now climbed to 805 cases across 46 states and the Virgin Islands, U.S. health officials reported Thursday.
There have also been 12 confirmed deaths in 10 states — California (two cases), Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas (two cases), Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, and Oregon, officials added. That is nearly a doubling of fatalities compared with the seven deaths reported a week ago. Unfortunately, officials still do not know exactly what is triggering these lung injuries.
“Although the investigation continues, no consistent electronic cigarette or vaping product, substance, additive, or brand has been identified in all cases, nor has any one product or substance been conclusively linked to lung injury in patients,” Anne Schuchat, M.D., principal deputy director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said during a media briefing held last week.
Nearly three-quarters of the people who have developed lung injury from vaping are male, Schuchat said, and more than half the cases are in people younger than 25. Symptoms include cough, shortness of breath, and chest pains. Many patients have required supplemental oxygen, and in extreme cases, patients required assisted ventilation and oxygenation or were intubated.