A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine indicates a relationship between vaping and an increased risk of developing pneumonia.
A lipoid pneumonia vaping link was first realized when researchers discovered patterns of lipids developing on the alveolar space of the patients’ lungs, likely resulting from the lung’s inflammatory response to the harsh chemicals found in vaping liquids.
Along with a lipoid pheumonia vaping risk, researchers found an increased risk of patients developing acute eosinophilic pneumonia, diffuse alveolar damage, and organizing pneumonia. Patterns of giant-cell interstitial pneumonia, hypersensitivity pneumonitis, and diffuse alveolar hemorrhage were also identified as possible risks associated with vaping.
The researchers directly examined 19 cases of vaping related injuries and reviewed the literature of an additional 15 cases in order to determine the exact cause of the vaping-related injuries and deaths that are currently being reported nationwide.
The study indicates that while the lipoid pheumonia vaping link is a result of inflammation of the lungs, there are different mechanisms of injury causing the other types of pheumonia to develop in certain patients.
“Rapidly developing acute lung injuries (e.g., acute eosinophilic pneumonia and diffuse alveolar damage) are associated with inhalational injuries and have overlapping pathological and imaging findings,” explained researchers.
While hypersensitivity pneumonitis is a result of the immune system’s response to environmental antigens, but the antigens related to vaping are currently unknown.
Organizing pneumonia develops subacutely, over a period of days to weeks.
Researchers only examined one case of giant-cell interstitial pneumonia, a rare fibrosing interstitial lung disease which developed over a period of 6 months.
According to the study, vaping products, which are identified as electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) include e-cigarette products used to smoke nicotine as well as ENDS products used for vaping THC. Researchers cannot determine which specific ENDS mechanisms are the proximate cause of these lung injuries.
The Center For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have both individually launched inquiries into the rising number of vaping-related illnesses and deaths nationwide.
Health officials have yet to determine the exact cause of these injuries, although researchers are beginning to discover indicators, such as the discovery of lipids in the lungs which marks a lipoid pneumonia vaping link.
These indicators can help determine the causation of this severe lung illness outbreak, which will hopefully lead to a solution.
The CDC currently has 805 case reports in 26 states and the Virgin Islands, including 12 deaths in 10 states.
State Health Departments and public health officials are urging nicotine users and cigarette users to avoid ENDS until they can determine the exact products causing the outbreak and the extent of injuries.
Any ENDS tobacco products, nicotine products, and THC products could potentially put users at risk.
Health officials say that users experiencing pneumonia symptoms such as chest pain, difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, coughing, and signs of acute respiratory distress syndrome should stop usage and seek medical treatment right away.
If you or a loved one uses Juul and has experienced any of these symptoms, or you have been diagnosed pneumonia or a lipoid pneumonia vaping injury, you may be eligible to participate in a Juul lawsuit or e-cigarette lawsuit.
Contact TorHoerman Law for a free no-obligation case consultation.
Christiani, D.C., et al. “Imaging of Vaping-Associated Lung Disease: NEJM.” New England Journal of Medicine, 6 Sept. 2019, www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/nejmc1911995.
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