Mysterious lung disease

At least a dozen individuals have died of a vaping-related chronic lung disorder, and while authorities are unwilling to blame it on any chemical or product, they warn that many patients reported purchasing THC cartridges from "casual sources" — that is, off the road or online.

"Most patients received their products from friends or dealers on the streets," Dr. Jennifer Layden, Illinois Health Department's chief epidemiologist, said today in a press call.

This also led, unfortunately, in an enormous multitude of brand names and kinds of cartridges and equipment. "In our research, 234 distinctive e-cigarette or vaping products have been recorded across 87 distinct brands among all 86 clients," said Layden. More than three-quarters of those interviewed indicated THC products, with only 16% of physicians claiming that they only used nicotine cartridges.

Symptoms that are experienced by Patients with Mysterious Lung Disease:

After using e-cigarettes, patients who came down with the mystery lung disease began experiencing symptoms anywhere from a few days to several weeks. Until now, according to the CDC, patients have a few things in common. They had breathing symptoms, including coughing, shortness of breath, chest pain, and breathing trouble. Also, prevalent symptoms were nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, tiredness, abdominal pain, fever, and weight loss.

On X-rays, the lungs of patients seem to be inflamed, as if a pathogen-infected them. But when physicians attempted to discover a common bacterial or viral source of the disease, nothing happened.

Research Conducted on CBD vaping issues and culprit brands:

A separate study, also published in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report of the CDC focused on Illinois and Wisconsin patients and came to a similar conclusion. Of the 86 nurses surveyed, 87% reported using THC products. The overwhelming bulk (96 percent) of THC products identified by these clients using pre-packaged, pre-filled packs or pods that they said were not tinkering with. These products were purchased mainly from "casual sources such as colleagues, family members, illegal distributors, or off the road." And while no brand was connected to all instances, 66 percent of clients reported using products under the brand name Dank Vapes.

"Dank Vapes seems to be the most prominent in a category of mainly falsified products, with prevalent packaging readily available online and used by retailers to sell THC-containing cartridges with no apparent centralized manufacturing or delivery," read the report.

Other most frequently mentioned products of clients were Moon Rocks, Off White, and TKO.

Latest Survey on the Death toll and Lung Disease by CBD Vaping:

The number of instances of vaping-related lung injury rose to 805 and the number of deaths to 12, but the particular causes of the diseases are undetermined, recorded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The CDC study, from 46 countries and one country, was an increase from last week when the count was 530 lung cases related to vaping and seven deaths.

There are two reported deaths in California, two in Kansas, and one in Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, and Oregon each. ⠀The latest survey found that 72 percent of male and 16 percent of lung injury cases were from users under the age of 18. 

According to the State Department of Health and Human Services, the number of confirmed or likely cases in Michigan has almost doubled to 20, and an additional ten examples are under investigation. Patients reported vaping cannabis oil in most of those cases; state health officials tell Metro Times. 

Despite the new link with cannabis, Michigan and the CDC were reluctant to point to THC and focused instead on nicotine, criticizing many health experts. Although other states issued warnings, Michigan was mostly silent.

The consultation survey highlights the confusion concerning lung disease. Of those surveyed, 58% of Americans said they believed that nicotine was to blame, while only 34% thought that cannabis was to blame.  

According to New Frontier Data, a financial analytics company that monitors the legal cannabis sector, cannabis vape cartridges now constitute about a third of the market two years ago. The cartridges are popular because they are discreet, cheap, simple to use, and are not going to stink a space.

What the authorities have to say?

The Food and Drug Administration said it initiated a criminal investigation into the spike of vaping-related diseases. The inquiry will concentrate on the products, where they were bought and how they were used.

"The particular cause of these lung diseases is not yet identified," the CDC said in a statement. "The study did not identify any particular e-cigarette or vapor product (devices, liquids, refill containers, and cans) or material related to all cases."

The CDC recommended that any user with health-related concerns should consider not using e-cigarettes or vaping products.

Notwithstanding the latest investigation, the CDC said that anyone using an e-cigarette or vaping product should not buy any vaping products off the street or modify or add any substances to the products that the manufacturer does not intend.

"This confusion leads to poor public policy," said Metro Times last week Dr. Michael Siegel, a professor of community health facilities at Boston University. "Instead of intervening to attempt to curb the allocation of oil-filled illegal, black-market THC vape cartridges, policymakers are banning flavored e-cigarettes that are not connected with the epidemic, as far as we understand. The prohibition of these products will result in many ex-smokers returning to smoking and will also generate a fresh black market for flavored e-liquids. Worst of all, it will lead many young people to move from vaporizing flavored e-liquids to vaporizing marijuana.

According to Leafly, a website devoted to marijuana, as many as 50 million cannabis cartridges are contaminated with lead, pesticides, vitamin E acetate or residual solvent butane.

What has the safety measure been taken by the States?

In Michigan, pesticides, toxic metals, bacteria, and remaining solvents from extraction techniques must be screened for all marijuana products sold at licensed supply facilities. However, like other countries with a controlled marijuana sector, the MRA does not involve vitamin E acetate testing, nor does it require producers of vape cartridges to disclose the ingredients.

Dispensaries are now needed in Oregon and New York to post warnings about the potential dangers of vape cartridges. In Massachusetts, the components used in their products will quickly have to be listed by cartridge producers.

Massachusetts prohibited vaping products for nicotine and cannabis, and California urges individuals not to purchase vape cartridges.


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