NEW HAVEN — The Department of Public Health announced Thursday that three more residents had been hospitalized in Connecticut to be treated for severe lung disease that may have been caused by vapor or e-cigarette products.
The federal Center for Disease Control and Prevention is investigating more than 200 “cases of severe lung disease associated with e-cigarette use” in 25 states, partnering with state agencies including the Department of Public Health, according to the announcement.
There have been five such cases in Connecticut, all reported in July or August, according to the announcement. Each of the patients has since been discharged from the hospital.
“These illnesses are very concerning because the use of e-cigarette products is increasing in our state and nationally, particularly among our youth,” said DPH Commissioner Renée D. Coleman-Mitchell in the release. “Some people might not be aware of the health risks associated with using these products. Anyone who has used e-cigarette products and experiences respiratory issues should seek medical care promptly because illnesses can become more severe without proper treatment.”
According to the announcement, the patients “experienced symptoms such as cough, shortness of breath, chest pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever.”
“Many patients were hospitalized and required intensive medical treatment. All patients reported using e-cigarette or vapor products and many patients reported using products that contain cannabinoid products, such as tetrahydrocannabinol (THC),” officials said in the announcement. “The investigation has not yet identified any single substance or product that is linked to all cases.”
The CDC “recommends that youth, young adults, and pregnant women should not use e-cigarette products,” according to the announcement.
For the people that do, the agency “recommends not buying products off of the street, and not modifying or adding any substances to the products.”