• 82°

APDH investigates 15 cases of lung disease linked to vaping

The Alabama State Department of Health says 15 people in the state may have lung disease associated with vaping.

The numbers are current as of September 18.

ADPH has joined other state health departments in requesting health care providers to report any cases of suspected serious respiratory illness among patients who use electronic cigarettes or other vaping devices.

The number of Alabama’s patients is currently not included in the national case numbers since the reports are still being investigated.

Recently, the CDC has activated its Emergency Operations Center in response to the ongoing lung illness.

“CDC has made it a priority to find out what is causing this outbreak of e-cigarette or vaping-related injuries and deaths,” said CDC Director Robert Redfield, M.D. “Activation of CDC’s Emergency Operations Center allows us to enhance operations and provide additional support to CDC staff working to protect our Nation from this serious health threat.”

The seventh death attributed to the pulmonary disease was reported this week. According to CNN, a 40-year-old California man died over the weekend from complications related to using e-cigarettes. Other deaths have been reported in Kansas, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota and Oregon.

The activation of the EOC will allow the agency to “provide increased operational support” related to the outbreak. CDC is also working with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to collect information about e-cigarette product use, or vaping, among patients and test the substances or chemicals in the products used by patients.

While the investigation continues, the CDC recommends people not use e-cigarettes or vaping products. If you do vape, it is recommended not to purchase any of the products off the street or modify or add substances to existing e-cigarettes.