Vaping & Your Lung Health: What You Need To Know
E-cigarettes may seem safer, but a recent outbreak in lung injury associated with their use suggest they are potentially damaging to our lungs. The CDC has released concerning data linking certain compounds used in e-cigarettes (also known as vaping) products to lung injury and even death. While the CDC is still working to identify and define the risk factors associated with vaping, here’s what we know (and what we still don’t know) about the connection between vaping and lung injury.
The Top 5 Things To Know About Vaping & Lung Injury
What is vaping, and why should you be concerned?
This term applies to using an e-cigarette device. These devices work by heating a liquid that contains substances like nicotine or THC and CBD products to produce an aerosol that can be inhaled into the lungs.
A compound called Vitamin E acetate is used as a thickening agent in the liquid used in these products. Research suggests that vitamin E acetate may interfere with normal lung function. The CDC, FDA, and state and local health departments are investigating a multistate outbreak of lung injury associated with these devices including 47 reported deaths with more as yet unreported.
What don’t we know?
While vitamin E acetate is of major concern, there are many other ingredients still under investigation that may be contributing to the outbreak.
What should you do?
The CDC recommends that people do not buy any type of e-cigarette or vaping product from informal sources such as in-person or online dealers, family or friends. They also emphasize not modifying or adding substances to these devices which are not intended by the manufacturer.
Recognize that all tobacco products carry risk regardless of the delivery system.If you are using an e-cigarette to quit smoking, the FDA has a list of approved nicotine replacement therapies.
What are the reported symptoms by patients?
Patients have reported symptoms worsening over days or even weeks, so adults who use these devices should remain on alert. Symptoms include:
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pain
- Abdominal pain
- Weight loss
Where can I get more information?
The CDC is continuously monitoring and reporting on this outbreak, so check their site for more information.
Your pulmonologist can help you identify a course of action to quit smoking or help manage stress in your life, while still prioritizing your lung health. Make an appointment today to discuss the right options for you.