Woman holding vape pen by Vaping360 License CC BY-ND 2.0
An outbreak of lung injuries nationwide has prompted public health officials in Nevada to push for additional research into the safety of vaping and vape products.
There have been six confirmed cases of vaping-related lung injuries in Nevada since September — all six in Southern Nevada. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, a seventh case is probable — that one in Washoe County.
Complete details on the cases aren’t public but the SNHD has reported that one of the confirmed cases was a minor and two were patients under the age of 20. One of the confirmed cases was a College of Southern Nevada student who went to the hospital for acute respiratory distress. That patient was put into an induced coma and put on a ventilator.
None of the cases in Nevada have been fatal.
But nationally there have been 54 confirmed deaths, spread out across 27 states and the District of Columbia, with additional deaths still under investigation. According to the CDC, as of Dec. 17, there have been a total of 2,506 cases of hospitalization across all U.S. states and territories.
According to the CDC, the vaping-related injuries are presenting with respiratory (cough, shortness of breath or chest pain), gastrointestinal (nausea, vomiting, stomach pain or diarrhea) and miscellaneous symptoms (fever, chills or weight loss). These symptoms have developed over a period of days or several weeks and are not associated with a lung infection.
“We think there’s underreporting,” says Malcolm Ahlo, senior health educator at the Southern Nevada Health District. “One: Not all providers are looking for it. Two: Some (patients) are just coughing and vomiting and not getting associated with it. We don’t think there is accurate reporting.”
State officials are looking to