Editorial

Danger of vaping should have been obvious

Monday, September 23, 2019

In a way, the use of e-cigarettes is like the bump stock.

After it was somehow made legal, it was only a matter of time before some lunatic used the bump stock, which converts a conventional, semi-automatic rifle into something resembling a fully automatic assault rifle, to commit mass murder, which is what happened Oct. 1, 2017, on the Las Vegas Strip.

The lunatic killed 58 people and wounded 422 which was enough to convince the president, yes, that the device should be banned.

In hindsight it seems incredulous that no one, especially regulators, seemed especially concerned about a new product, which used a battery to heat a liquid to deliver a vapor of addictive chemicals into the userís lungs.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there have been 530 cases of lung injury reported from 38 states and one U.S. territory. Seven deaths have been confirmed in six states.

Admittedly, many of the patients didnít use the devices as intended, filling them instead with a liquid containing THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, as well as nicotine, while some reported using them only for nicotine.

First seen as healthy alternative to cigarettes, the devices are associated with illnesses that have caused states to enact or consider banning flavored vape liquid, and Walmart to stop selling e-cigarettes altogether.

Meanwhile, evidence continues to mount about the dangers of vaping, especially among young people.

The CDC reports that 72% of the cases of illness are male, two-thirds are are 18 to 34 years old, 16% are under 18 and 17% are 35 or older.

While most reported vaping THC, the CDC doesnít know the specific cause of these lung injuries, such as specific e-cigarette or vaping products or substances.

For now, the CDC recommends refraining from using e-cigarettes or vaping products if you are concerned.

-- If you are an adult who used e-cigarettes containing nicotine to quit cigarette smoking, do not return to smoking cigarettes.

-- If you have recently used an e-cigarette or vaping product and you have symptoms like those reported in this outbreak see a healthcare provider.

In any case, the CDC recommends:

-- 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.

-- Youth and young adults should not use e-cigarette products.

-- Women who are pregnant should not use e-cigarette products.

-- Adults who do not currently use tobacco products should not start using e-cigarette products.

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