Non-smokers advised to avoid e-cigarettes amid national lung disease outbreak

MDH Teens Ill From THC Vape Pens

That same chemical was also found in almost all cannabis samples from patients who fell ill in NY in recent weeks, a state health department spokeswoman said.

A death in OR that may be linked to vaping would be the state's first fatality in what health officials described as a "national outbreak" of severe lung illnesses.

The Oregon death is the first in the country involving a vaping product with marijuana. Before the incident, OHA was actively engaged in warning the public of the health risks of vaping products in a recent report detailing the health risks for products including nicotine addiction, exposure to toxic chemicals, and increases in blood pressure.

Thomas said that "we want the public to know this is a real danger ... young people, pregnant people, people who are not already vaping should not vape".

At least two people who developed severe respiratory illnesses after vaping have died and there are at least 215 other cases of severe lung disease that may be tied to the activity, according to the Centers for Disease Control. The CDC does emphasize they haven't determined a cause but one thing all the cases have in common is the patient vaped, or used an e-cigarette. The agencies also cautioned against altering commercial vaping products or consuming home-brew substances.

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Concerns continue to grow surrounding the ongoing reports of hospitalizations relating to e-cigarette use.

"At this point, we'd say we don't really know what is safe", Thomas said, according to The New York Times. Officials said that the patient was otherwise healthy, but that the lung illness overtook them very quickly. Many reported a slow buildup before they were hospitalized, including difficulty breathing, shortness of breath and chest pain. Others appeared to have a virus, including fevers and fatigue, or gastrointestinal issues like vomiting and diarrhea.

Public health authorities are investigating the brands and types of e-cigarette products used by the patients, where they were obtained, and whether any of them would fall under the FDA's regulatory authority. In late August, an IL person died from the lung illness after using an e-cigarette.

"More information is needed to better understand whether there's a relationship between any specific products or substances and the reported illnesses", the officials said. THC stands for Tetrahydrocannabinol, the compound that is the main ingredient in cannabis.

Proponents of e-cigarettes have called them a helpful tool for getting tobacco users to give up conventional cigarettes - or to never get hooked on them in the first place.

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