It’s no secret that vaping has become a public health crisis and now it has claimed the life of its youngest victim to date.
According to Dallas County Health and Human Services, a Texas-based 15-year-old died from an E-cigarette or vaping associated lung injury (EVALI). The teen’s identity has yet to be released.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released their latest statistics surrounding vaping-related lung injuries. The young person’s death is now one of 57 confirmed EVALI-related deaths. There have been 2,602 hospitalized EVALI cases or deaths reported to the CDC.
“Although the number of reported cases appears to be declining, states are still reporting new hospitalized EVALI cases to CDC on a weekly basis and should remain vigilant with EVALI case finding and reporting,” the CDC stated in its latest report.
In response to public concern, the Food and Drug Administration has announced a ban on “flavored, cartridge-based” e-cigarette products. The ban does not include tobacco and menthol.
“The United States has never seen an epidemic of substance use arise as quickly as our current epidemic of youth use of e-cigarettes,” said Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said in a statement.
He added that the department will continue monitoring the situation and “take further actions as necessary.”
The CDC went on to encourage people to avoid the use of all vaping products, especially those that contain THC. Those who do use these products should watch for symptoms including cough, chest pain, shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, fevers, chills, or weight loss.
Katie Nave is a freelance writer, producer, and mama living in Brooklyn, New York. Driven by her passion for storytelling, she is always seeking opportunities to elevate people who are working to better the world around them.