23:22 GMT02 December 2020
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The number of deaths caused by vaping-related respiratory illnesses in the United States has climbed to 42, and nearly 2,200 cases of lung injuries have been reported, the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said in a notice.

    "Forty-two deaths have been confirmed in 24 states and the District of Columbia as of 13 November", the agency said in its weekly update on Thursday.

    The median age of deceased patients was 52 years and ranged from 17 to 75 years, the CDC said.

    "More deaths are under investigation", the agency added.

    As of 13 November, it said some 2,172 lung injury cases related to vaping have been reported to the agency from 49 states, the District of Columbia, and one US territory.

    About 64 percent reported using nicotine-containing products; 11% reported exclusive use of nicotine-containing products.

    The CDC said data it had compiled so far on 1,378 patients showed 70 percent of them to be male, with a median age of 24 years and an age range of 13 to 75 years.

    Breaking down the ages, the agency said 14 percent were under the age of 18. Some 40 percent were between 18 and 24 years old, while another 25 percent were between 25 and 34 years old.

    Only 21 percent of the patients were 35 years or older.

    The CDC also updated its data on 867 patients found to have substances used in e-cigarette or vaping products three months prior to the onset of illness symptoms.

    This data has overlapping numbers.

    About 86 percent reported using THC-containing products and another 34% reported exclusive use of THC-containing products. THC or tetrahydrocannabinol is one of at least 113 cannabinoids identified in cannabis.

    About 64 percent reported using nicotine-containing products while 11% reported exclusive use of nicotine-containing products.

    The CDC’s update came after President Donald Trump said earlier this week he would hold a meeting with experts in the vaping industry and medical professionals to find a solution to the dangers posed by the consumption of e-cigarettes amid the rising death toll.

    © Sputnik / Vladimir Pesnya

    Last week, the CDC said it found evidence of Vitamin E acetate in patients with lung injuries from an e-cigarette or vaping use, the first discovery of a potential chemical of concern in the epidemic. While past research has not indicated any harm from consumption or topical applications, Vitamin E acetate can interfere with lung functions if inhaled, the CDC said.

    As of 22nd October, the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention reported 34 deaths and 1,604 cases of lung injuries related to the use of e-cigarettes. However, the exact causes of the respiratory illness are still under investigation as over 800 Americans have fallen ill after using THC and/or nicotine vape cartridge, according to the CDC.

    e-cigarette, vaping, United States
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