e-cigarettes

Piper Johnson was all packed and ready to drive across country with her mom to start college when the 18-year-old noticed a pain in her chest. She took an Advil and hoped the pain would go away.

It didn't. During the drive from her hometown of New Lenox, Ill., near Chicago, to the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley, Colo., she realized something was very wrong. "I kept feeling worse and worse," Johnson says. She developed a high fever, felt extremely lethargic, and noticed a rapid heart beat.

Public health officials say the number of people who have died or have gotten ill after using e-cigarettes or other vaping products is rising, and they're still trying to figure out why. It's led to plenty of warnings about e-cigarettes and put a spotlight on illegal vaping operations.

Bristol, Wis., is just north of the Wisconsin-Illinois state line. In early September, law enforcement officials conducted a raid at a condo unit located in a winding subdivision of new homes and houses still under construction.

Lawmakers and private companies are beginning to address the spread of a mysterious vaping-related illness that has killed 12 people and afflicted over 800 more.

From The New York Times:

It's still a mystery — what's causing the cluster of severe respiratory illnesses among people who've used e-cigarettes? The FDA says there have been at least 215 reported cases in 25 states.

Nearly three dozen of those cases are in New York state, and investigators there say they are now zeroing in on vitamin E as a possible culprit. Health officials say state lab tests detected high levels of vitamin E in cartridges of cannabis vaping products used by people who vaped and suffered serious lung damage.

Ruslan Alekso / Pexels

Colorado health officials say one person has been confirmed with a severe lung disease that appears to be linked to electronic cigarette products.

The Denver Post reported Thursday that the state Department of Public Health and Environment is investigating a possible second case of the illness that was reported to health officials Tuesday.

Scientists don't know much yet about the long-term effects of "vape juice," the liquid used in e-cigarettes and vaporizers. But researchers analyzing the liquid and the vapor produced when it's heated say some kinds of e-liquids are reacting to form irritating chemicals called acetals while they're sitting on shelves.

Editor's note: This story has been updated to include comments from Juul.

Popular e-cigarette company Juul's November 2018 commitment to stop marketing its products to youth on social media may have done little to curb the brand's reach among young people.

Lindsay Fox / ecigarettereviewed.com / CC BY 2.0

A law against public vaping has taken effect across Colorado.

The Durango Herald reports the new state law beginning Monday prohibits vaping in most public places, including bars and restaurants.

In his almost two years as FDA Commissioner, Scott Gottlieb has overseen a crackdown on the tobacco industry and on electronic cigarettes. It's an effort he hopes the agency will continue after he steps down in April.

That's because, he says, of increased e-cigarette use among America's youth. If that continues, he tells NPR's Steve Inskeep, the FDA should consider banning them.

Lindsay Fox / ecigarettereviewed.com / CC BY 2.0

Cannabis advocates are watching closely as Colorado lawmakers consider limits on where e-cigarettes can be used in an effort to combat rising teen use of nicotine-containing vaping devices.

A bipartisan bill getting its first hearing Wednesday would add electronic cigarettes and other vaping devices to the Colorado Clean Indoor Air Act, which restricts tobacco use at the workplace and in many public spaces.

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