We recently covered the troubling incidents of illness, lung injury, and potential fatalities associated with vaping. Initial reports suggested that additives, such as Vitamin E Acetate, triggered immune system reactions and other symptoms that lead to serious medical problems.

Now the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has officially linked Vitamin E Acetate to the reported health problems.

U.S. health officials finally have a potential breakthrough in the vaping illness outbreak that’s killed at least 39 people, narrowing in on vitamin E acetate as a “potential toxin of concern,” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention officials said Friday.

The compound used in supplements, cosmetics and some vaping products was detected in all 29 lung tissue samples from patients health officials tested, Dr. Anne Schuchat, the CDC’s principal deputy director, told reporters on a conference call.

“We have a potential toxin of concern from biological samples in patients,” Schuchat said. “We are in a better place than we were a few weeks ago in terms of finding a culprit.”

Vitamin E Acetate is an oil that is often used quite safely in creams and cosmetic products. However, when it is heated and inhaled, it causes chemical burns to the sensitive tissues of the respiratory system.

Vitamin E acetate is one of the compounds used to dilute Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) oil that is added to the vaping oil by black-market distributors. THC is the compound in marijuana that produces central nervous system effects.

Of 29 lung tissue samples from 10 states tested for the additive, all contained vitamin E acetate.

“These new findings are significant because for the first time, we have detected a potential toxin of concern – vitamin E acetate – in biologic samples from patients with lung injuries associated with the use of e-cigarette or vaping products,” Dr. Anne Schuchat of the CDC said.

She described it as a “breakthrough” that the additive was found “at the primary site of injury within the lung.”

The CDC reported that as of Tuesday, the outbreak had sickened 2,051 people and resulted in 39 confirmed deaths. Schuchat noted the “trend in cases appears to be downward, but some states are still being hard hit.”

President Donald Trump has just announced that he will be meeting with vaping industry representatives as his administration considers tightening e-cigarette regulations in the wake of the findings.

“Will be meeting with representatives of the Vaping industry, together with medical professionals and individual state representatives, to come up with an acceptable solution to the Vaping and E-cigarette dilemma. Children’s health & safety, together with jobs, will be a focus!” he wrote on Twitter.

Trump did not give a time for the meeting or offer any other details. He said on Friday that his administration would come out with “an important position” on vaping this week.

Whatever is decided, the target should be the black market vaping producers and not the responsible producers of completely legal products.

Punishing legit e-cigarette manufacturers will only lead to more black market products, which will worsen an already bad situation.

 
 
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