(Reuters) – Massachusetts state health officials on Monday confirmed one death from a mysterious lung illness linked to e-cigarettes, bringing the total number of fatalities to 21 across 18 U.S. states.
Latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which updates the national numbers every Thursday, listed 1,080 confirmed and probable cases of the illness as of Oct. 1. (http://bit.ly/2IlMmo5)
The agency last month urged people to not use e-cigarettes with marijuana ingredient tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), saying that the high-inducing component may have a role in causing the illness.
Here’s what we know about the vaping-related deaths so far:
** States that have reported deaths: Alabama, California (2), Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas (2), Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey, Oregon (2), Virginia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts.
** Nearly 70% of the 889 patients, on whom data is available, are male, with 16% below 18 years of age, according to the CDC.
** Data shows all reported patients have a history of e-cigarette use or vaping.
** Patients have reported symptoms such as cough, shortness of breath or chest pain, as well as nausea or diarrhea, according to the CDC.
** Washington governor Jay Inslee last month urged state agencies to ban flavored and cannabis-derived vaping products and said more stringent rules could follow.
** Massachusetts has imposed a four-month ban on sales of all vaping products, including those used for marijuana, which is legal in the state.
** Several vape shop owners have sued Massachusetts, asking the court to deem the ban “unconstitutional.”
** A federal judge last week denied the industry’s bid to put a hold on Massachusetts’ four-month ban, saying a temporary restraining order on the ban would conflict with the public interest.
** New York state, Michigan and Rhode Island have all banned the sale of flavored vaping products.
** Kroger Co, Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc and Walmart Inc have said they would stop selling e-cigarettes at their stores.
(Reporting by Manojna Maddipatla and Manas Mishra in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva and Sriraj Kalluvila)