There are two new cases of vaping-related illness in Colorado, bringing the total to 11.
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment tracks the “outbreak cases,” and defines a vaping-related illness as occurring when someone recently used a vaping device, developed a breathing illness, and did not have an infection.
Three quarters of illnesses occurred in men and the median age is 18. Denver has the highest number of cases at four, while CPR reports that the two new cases occurred in Jefferson County. Currently, no one has died from vaping in Colorado.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention cautions that long-term health-effects from vaping are not entirely evident yet. Electronic cigarette devices use a battery to heat liquid that can contain nicotine, flavors and other chemicals. This produces an inhaled vapor, which could contain cancer-causing elements. The devices themselves could also ignite and cause fire or injury.
As of October 15, the CDC was aware of 1,479 lung injury cases nationwide from vaping and electronic cigarettes. Thirty-three people have died. The agency believes that THC plays a role in the outbreak, and recommends against using THC-containing vaporizing devices.
Gov. Jared Polis told CPR in September that he supports “closing the vaping loophole” by making vape products subject to the state’s tobacco tax. The state Senate killed a proposal in May to refer such a tax proposal to the voters.