Dec. 9, 2019 — No single THC-containing product brand appears responsible for the outbreak of lung injuries linked to the use of e-cigarette, or vaping, products, the CDC has found.
Overall, 152 different THC-containing product brands were reported by patients with EVALI (e-cigarette, or vaping, product use associated lung injury), according to the first national data released Friday by the CDC. Dank Vapes, a class of largely counterfeit THC-containing products of unknown origin, and frequently mentioned as a cause of the outbreak, was the most commonly reported product nationwide.
As of Dec. 3 of this year, 2,291 patients have been hospitalized, with cases in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands due to these particular lung injuries, the CDC reports. The fatality rate of all reported cases is 2%, with 48 deaths reported.
While Dank Vapes was the most commonly reported product nationwide, many other brands have been linked with the outbreak. Brands also varied by region of the country.
Dank Vapes was most commonly reported by patients in the Northeast and South.
TKO and Smart Cart brands were cited by patients in the West.
Rove was more commonly reported in the Midwest.
The new information suggests that EVALI is linked with THC-containing products but not one single product brand, the CDC says. But it continues to advise people to avoid not only THC-containing products, but all e-cigarette or vaping products.
More About the New CDC Analysis
For the new report, officials looked at interview or medical records of patients hospitalized with a vaping-related illness to gather more information. They found:
The median patient age is 24, but ranges from 13 to 77, meaning half of the cases are among people ages 13 to 24.
67% of patients are male.
75% of patients are non-Hispanic white and 16% are Hispanic.
Fatalities range in age from 17 to 75, but the median age is 52, which means half of the patients who died were ages 52 to 75.
Use of THC-containing products was reported by 80% of patients.
Statistics indicate the outbreak may be waning. Since the peak number of hospitalizations the week of Sept. 15, cases have steadily declined. But new cases continue to be reported.
If people are using e-cigarettes to stop smoking cigarettes, the CDC advises them to use FDA-approved smoking cessation products rather than return to regular cigarettes. The FDA has approved prescription nicotine replacement therapy as well as the prescription medications bupropion (Zyban) and varenicline (Chantix). Over-the-counter nicotine replacement therapy such as skin patches, chewing gum, and lozenges are also available.
Morbidity & Mortality Weekly Report: Dec. 6, 2019.
CDC: Outbreak of Lung Injury Associated with the Use of E-Cigarette, or Vaping, Products: Dec. 6, 2019.
FDA: Want to Quit Smoking? FDA-Approved Products Can Help. Dec. 12, 2017 .
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