Health officials have reported the sixth death related to vaping, the first to be reported in Kansas. According to CNN, the woman was older than 50 and had a history of health problems. The Kansas Department of Health and Environment was unsure what type of vaping products she used.
Although a clear link between vaping and severe pulmonary illness is still under investigation, health officials in New York might have discovered a clue. Their investigations uncovered extremely high levels of the chemical vitamin E acetate in nearly all cannabis-containing vaping products, including each product that was submitted for testing after a person became ill. These factors have made the chemical a “key focus” of the investigation, according to the New York Department of Health.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo ordered that the state health department issue subpoenas to three companies that market thickening agents to vape liquid manufacturers. The Wadsworth Center analyzed the thickener samples from the three companies and determined that they all contained nearly pure vitamin E acetate oil.
Last week, the American Lung Association warned that “e-cigarettes are not safe” and that they can cause irreversible lung damage and disease.
The president of the American Medical Association (AMA) released a written statement last week, recommending “anyone who has recently used e-cigarette products to seek medical care promptly if they experience any adverse health effects, particularly coughing, shortness of breath or chest pain.”
She also urged the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to speed up the regulation of e-cigarettes, to remove all unregulated products from the market, and to ban all flavors and marketing practices that appeal to the youth.
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