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E-cigarettes and Liquid Nicotine

E-cigarettes and liquid nicotine have become very popular over the past few years. However, there is concern on the safety of these products.

 

 

AAPCC & GPC: E-Cigarettes and Liquid Nicotine Data

These numbers reflect the closed human exposures to e-cigarettes and liquid nicotine reported to poison centers as of March 31, 2020. The numbers may change as cases are closed and additional information is received. For more information on AAPCC data, please click here.

Year AAPCC Number of Cases GPC Number of Cases
2011 269 5
2012 459 13
2013 1,540 21
2014 4,011 86
2015 3,733 98
2016 2,899 65
2017 2,470 50
2018 3,139 93
2019 5,335 163
2020 YTD 936 32

 

What are e-cigarettes?

Dangers of e-cigarettes

The lung injury known as EVALI (e-cigarette, or vaping, produce-use associated lung injury) was recognized in the summer of 2019, with cases peaking in September 2019 and steadily declining since then. It can present as progressive lung illness that can result in severe lung injury, hospitalization, and death.  Most, but not all, cases have been associated with people using informally sourced THC vape products, such as those bought on the street. Vitamin E acetate, a product used in many foods and cosmetics, has been linked with EVALI and has been found in many street-obtained THC products. Vitamin E acetate is typically safe for ingestion and application on the skin, but research suggests that when it is inhaled it can disrupt normal lung function. While vitamin E acetate seems to be a causative chemical, there is not enough evidence to say it is the only chemical in e-cigarettes that causes EVALI. Most of the flavorings and other ingredients in e-cigarette liquid have not been studied when inhaled and many of the risks with vaping are still unknown.

The aerosol that users breathe and exhale can contain harmful  and potentially harmful substances, including:

Common mild symptoms to watch for:

Common severe symptoms to watch for:

Recommendations from the CDC:

Tips to prevent potentially harmful exposures to e-cigarettes or liquid nicotine:

Additional Resources