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What are the early warning signs of vaping illness?

E-cigarettes were originally designed as a healthier alternative to traditional cigarettes. But it turns out that vaping — commonly known as e-cigarettes — comes with its own risks.

In August 2019, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention began tracking cases of serious lung problems in people who use e-cigarettes. Thousands suffered lung damage and required treatment in hospital, and several died from the condition. Ultimately, the researchers linked these cases to e-cigarettes. The disease is now known as vaping or vaping product use-associated lung injury (EVALI).

Doctors and researchers are still working to learn more about this condition, including its exact causes and long-term effects. But there are early signs of EVALI to look out for, so you know when you need help.

Early symptoms of EVALI

even though researchers are aware of the condition associated with vaping, but they don’t yet know how it happens.

“We’re still not sure about the exact cause, but it’s presumed to be an inflammatory response in the lungs due to something in the e-cigarette aerosol,” said The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. pulmonologist Joanna Tsai said.

People with EVALI may have breathing and digestive problems, as well as other symptoms, including:



  • Coughing
  • Difficulty breathing

  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest tightness

    Abdominal pain

    Loss of appetite (not hungry)

    Nausea and Vomiting

  • Diarrhea
  • Weight loss

Some people say their symptoms develop within days, while others say it takes weeks. Affected people appear to have severe lung damage. They may even need intensive care and support with a ventilator, a machine that helps you breathe.

Who is at greatest risk

in Anyone who has vaped in the past 90 days is at risk of EVALI. You don’t have to be old or already sick.

“Many of these patients are normal, healthy people,” Cai said.

The mean age of EVALI patients was 24 years, and almost four-fifths were younger than 35 years. That may be because vaping products are the most popular among young people, said Rachel Boykan, MD, associate clinical professor of pediatrics at Stony Brook University’s Renaissance School of Medicine.

You may be at greater risk if you use an e-cigarette product that contains vitamin E acetate. The CDC says it’s a common chemical found in the lungs of sick people. Vitamin E Acetate comes from vitamin E. It is often used to thicken liquids, especially in vaping or vaping products that contain THC. THC is the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana that can get you high.

It seems that many people who are sick don’t just smoke nicotine.

“When EVALI broke out and resulted in multiple deaths, we learned that most of the people involved were smoking THC, although there are still reports of people smoking only nicotine,” Tsai said.

But that doesn’t mean smoking nicotine is safer. There is still a lot to learn. Cai said the industry is “basically unregulated,” meaning there are no established standards that manufacturers must follow. So buyers don’t always know what they’re getting.

What to do if you have symptoms

If you use any type of product and experience any of the above symptoms, seek medical attention immediately. They will do a full examination and evaluation to rule out other diseases, such as bacterial or viral pneumonia. You may have a chest X-ray or CT scan. Healthy lungs are filled with air and look dark. If you have EVALI, the scan will show blurred spots (cloudiness).

You may take corticosteroids to reduce inflammation in the lungs. Or, in severe cases, you may need a ventilator. But if your doctor says it’s just a cold or a stomach bug, it’s still not safe to get back into vaping. While the CDC has several precautions for people who continue to use e-cigarettes or vaping, it says the best way to avoid the risk of EVALI is to quit smoking altogether.



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