5 Dangers of Vaping
Vaping is not just “an alternative to cigarettes.” There is still a lot about vaping we don’t know, and these products have yet to be regulated. What we do know is not good news: vaping has been linked with heart failure, lung failure, explosions, deaths, and addiction.
Chaffin Luhana is providing free consultations to concerned vapers and their families who fear they were not adequately warned of the risks associated with the product and have been injured by the products. Many say, had they known of these five dangers of vaping, they never would have started.
Whether you smoke cigarettes or vape, nicotine is a toxic substance that raises your blood pressure and spikes your adrenaline. These actions within the body increase your heart rate, and the likelihood of a sudden heart attack or stroke.
Another study found that “some-day” and “every-day” e-cigarette use is associated with increased risk of myocardial infarction – a blockage of blood flow to the heart, also known as a heart attack. According to researchers, the effects of e-cigarettes are similar to conventional cigarettes, though the use of both products together is “riskier than using either product alone.”
Even without nicotine, vaping devices have deleterious health effects. Researchers looked at what happened to 31 young adult non-smokers in good health after using a nicotine-free e-cigarette. Immediately after vaping, the test subjects’ arteries became stiffer and demonstrated a reduced ability to dilate in response to increasing demands for blood flow. These changes can be a triggering event for a heart attack and are a risk factor for the long-term development of heart disease.
At least 450 Americans have been hospitalized for lung diseases related to vaping. Initial complaints include coughing, chest pain, fatigue, fever, night sweats, shortness of breath, and vomiting.
“The lung illness gets worse really quickly,” explained Jeffrey Kanne, a University of Wisconsin radiologist who investigated eight cases of adolescent vaping lung disease. “These are like what you see with acute lung injuries,” such as industrial accident toxic substance inhalation, he said.
The New England Journal of Medicine analyzed 53 vaping lung injury cases in Wisconsin and Illinois. The patients were mostly men with a median age of 19. More than half of the patients required ICU care, a third were put on ventilators, and one died.
According to the Washington Post, one patient had gone from “being a 20-year-old hiking enthusiast” to “being kept alive by two machines forcing air into and out of his lungs and oxygenating his blood outside of his body” within a matter of days. After a dire initial prognosis that had his parents planning his funeral, the patient left the hospital after six weeks with 25 percent diminished lung capacity and short-term memory deficits that may never cease.
There are many different theories as to why vaping has been linked with lung failure. Research has shown that vapor from e-cigarettes impairs lung cell linings and that vaping hampers the lungs’ ability to fend off infections.
The CDC and FDA are looking into whether a vape-juice thickener called vitamin E acetate is causing the sudden uptick in illnesses. It can be difficult for consumers to ascertain whether their product contains the thickening agent or not, so they are advising that people avoid vaping products altogether. The CDC said lung injury cases appear most often in people who vape THC products like Dank Vapes and Chronic Carts.
E-cigarette aerosols are NOT “harmless water vapors,” as manufacturers would lead you to believe. The CDC warns that vape aerosols contain nicotine, ultrafine particles, diacetyl flavoring (a chemical linked to severe lung disease), volatile organic compounds, cancer-causing chemicals, and heavy metals like nickel, tin, and lead.
A 2018 e-cigarette flavors study confirmed that “the liquids vaporized by e-cigarettes are chemically unstable and form new chemicals that irritate the airways and may have other toxic effects.” Researchers say they were surprised to observe how vanilla or fruit flavor chemicals reacted with vapor carrier chemicals like propylene glycol and glycerin to produce acetals – strong, harmful lung irritants.
The number of deaths associated with vaping appears to be increasing. The first vaping-related death was reported in Illinois on August 23, 2019. At the time, officials were investigating 200 cases of baffling vape-related illnesses. The investigation into the man’s death is ongoing, and officials have not released much else about the case, except to say that he had been hospitalized after coming down with a sudden and mysterious lung illness.
Shortly thereafter, Oregon officials confirmed a second death. A middle-aged man fell ill after vaping with a store-bought marijuana oil product. Four more deaths were disclosed in California, Indiana, Kansas, and Minnesota.
Officials aren’t sure why the spat of cases has appeared all of a sudden. They’re currently trying to figure out if it’s related to specific products, brands, or uses of the vaping devices. It’s also possible doctors are better informed in diagnosing the cases or that the results of previously pending investigations are becoming newly available. The focus of the investigation is narrowing down to a type of chemical exposure.
Before the most recent deaths, the big news headline about vaping pens was that they were “flaming rockets” capable of causing explosions and fires. Defective lithium-ion batteries were found to be the root cause of these terrifying incidents.
In one case, a 17-year-old from Nevada, who was reportedly smoking electronic cigarettes to “try to quit smoking,” shattered his jaw, knocked out his teeth, and burned his lips vaping.
At least two deaths in the U.S., and more than 2,035 severe injuries were related to e-cigarette explosions from 2015 to 2017. Patients are coming in missing teeth, blinded, with losses to parts of the face or the roof of the mouth, and suffering from third-degree burns.
A 2017 report from the U.S. Fire Administration found that the “shape and construction of electronic cigarettes can make them more likely than other products with lithium-ion batteries to behave like flaming rockets when a battery fails.”
In response, the FDA has announced new guidelines for manufacturers to submit detailed information about the kinds of batteries they use and the likelihood of overheating in their proposals for e-cigarette applications. However, it’s unclear the increased oversight will have an impact on product safety.
Although e-cigarettes are marketed as an aid to help people quit smoking, the reality is that they are addictive in their own right. In 2015, the U.S. surgeon general reported that e-cigarette use had skyrocketed 900 percent among high school students. A whopping 40 percent of vapers had never smoked a traditional cigarette before.
There are many reasons vaping is more appealing. For starters, many teens mistakenly believe e-cigarettes are “less harmful” than smoking. On top of that, the cost is more affordable, the unpleasant odor of smoke is not an issue, and flavors like “apple pie” or “watermelon” naturally appeal to sensation-seeking younger users.
Research shows teens who vape are three times more likely to try conventional cigarettes later on.
The addiction is not just psychological. Compared to traditional tobacco products, e-cigarettes are able to deliver much higher doses of addictive nicotine to the brain.
One Juul pod contains as much nicotine as an entire pack of cigarettes.
Furthermore, e-cigarette users can purchase higher concentration cartridges or increase the e-cig’s voltage.
The CDC warns that nicotine harms the adolescent brain, which does not finish wiring until about age 25. “Using nicotine in adolescence can harm the parts of the brain that control attention, learning, mood, and impulse control,” they caution.
Nicotine changes the way connections are formed between brain cells, actually building a pathway for future addiction to other drugs.
Vaping Injury? Call Chaffin Luhana
Contact Chaffin Luhana for a free consultation if you or a loved one have been harmed by vaping. We ask for no money upfront. We only collect a fee if we win money on your behalf. You can trust in our track record of success: Our attorneys have recovered over $1 billion and counting for our clients. Call today to see if you are eligible to file a vaping lawsuit.