The death toll from e-cigarette, or vaping, product use-associated lung injury (EVALI) in the United States (US) has climbed to 52, with authorities reporting that as of 10 December, 2,409 hospitalised EVALI cases had been reported from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.
While the number of reported cases appears to be declining, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said states are still reporting new hospitalised EVALI cases on a weekly basis.
Authorities have identified vitamin E acetate as a “chemical of concern” in EVALI. The CDC says the latest national and state findings suggest tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)-containing e-cigarette or vaping products, particularly from informal sources, are “linked to most of the cases and play a major role in the outbreak”.
The use of 152 different THC-containing product brands has been reported by EVALI patients, and the CDC says data further supports that EVALI is associated with THC-containing products and that it is not likely associated with a single brand.
Authorities have recommended that people should not use THC-containing e-cigarette or vaping products, particularly from informal sources, and that vitamin E acetate should not be added to products.