Sep 27, 2019

CDC: THC products linked to vaping-related lung injuries

Vaping liquids and cartridges. Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The CDC announced Friday that THC vape products have been linked to a majority of patients with vaping-related lung injuries, citing to data from 1 local and 1 national study.

Why it matters: While the CDC is not shifting its focus away from nicotine, officials said 77% of those with exposure histories reported using products that contain THC, the psychoactive component in marijuana, or both THC-containing products and nicotine-containing products.

What's happening: There are 805 confirmed and probable cases of lung injury and 12 dead associated with e-cigarette use in 46 states and 1 U.S. territory.

  • The national study contained 514 patients, and 36% reported exclusive use of THC-containing products while 16% reported exclusive use of nicotine-containing products.
  • Officials also cited a report from Illinois and Wisconsin which said that a vast majority of 89 people used THC products. The products were packaged, pre-filled cartridges and primarily acquired from "informal sources" like friends and family, illicit dealers or off the street.

Where it stands: The CDC and health officials still cannot identify a definite product or source. Acting FDA Commissioner Ned Sharpless told a congressional committee on Wednesday that investigators are working to identify the toxic products and "follow the supply chain to the source."

  • "To be clear, if we determine that someone is manufacturing or distributing illicit, adulterated vaping products that caused illness and death for personal profit, we would consider that to be a criminal act," he said.

Go deeper: Revenue from marijuana vaping products dips 15% amid health fears

Go deeper

FDA: Stop using THC vaping products

A man uses an e-cigarette in D.C. in 2018. Photo: Eva Hambach/AFP/Getty Images

The FDA released a consumer alert on Friday stating the public should not use vaping products that contain THC, the primary psychoactive component of the cannabis plant.

Why it matters: Officials from the Centers for Disease Control say that THC vape products have been linked to a majority of patients with vaping-related lung injuries, which have caused 18 deaths as of Oct. 4. There are currently 1,080 confirmed and probable cases of the lung injury, per the CDC.

Go deeperArrowOct 5, 2019

CDC confirms 2,807 hospital cases of lung injury linked to vaping

Photo: Eva Hambach/AFP/Getty Images

There are 2,807 confirmed hospital cases of lung injury associated with vaping in all 50 states, Washington, D.C. and two U.S. territories, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports as of Feb 18.

What's new: Because of the consistent declines in new EVALI cases since Sept. 2019, as well as the identification of vitamin E acetate as a primary cause of EVALI, Tuesday's report will be the final CDC update on the number of hospitalized EVALI cases and deaths nationally.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Feb 25, 2020 - Health

How marijuana laws may be contributing to vaping illnesses

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

A mysterious vaping-related lung illness has now afflicted more than 1,000 people and killed at least 21 — and America's patchwork approach to marijuana law is probably part of the problem.

The big picture: Most of these lung illness cases involve people who vaped THC, the primary psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, and many of those pods are believed to have come from the black market. A more cohesive regulatory scheme could help consumers know what to trust.

Go deeperArrowOct 9, 2019