Vaping deaths, lung disease cases cause concern


Olivia Connor, Writer

A North Texas woman recently died from a vaping-related lung disease according to the She was the first reported death in the state.

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) is tracking 1,299 lung injury cases throughout the nation and has confirmed 29 deaths so far related to vaping and e-cigarettes. Click here to read more about this growing epidemic.

Vaping is a dangerous habit and no one, especially teens, should be engaging in this activity. Texas A&M University recently banned e-cigarettes and vaping on their campus, and more businesses and organizations should follow their example.

An electronic cigarette is a battery-operated device, often resembling a cigarette, cigar, pipe or pen, that emits doses of vaporized nicotine, or non-nicotine solution for the user to inhale. It aims to provide a similar sensation to inhaling tobacco smoke, without the smoke. Most are reusable, with replaceable and refillable cartridges, but some are disposable.

E-cigarettes heat nicotine (extracted from tobacco), flavorings and other chemicals to create a water vapor that users inhale. Regular tobacco cigarettes contain 7,000 chemicals, many of which are toxic. “While we don’t know exactly what chemicals are in e-cigarettes,” Dr. Michael Blaha, director of clinical research at the Johns Hopkins Ciccarone Center for the Prevention of Heart Disease, said, “there’s almost no doubt that they expose you to fewer toxic chemicals than traditional cigarettes.” This is why many believe that vaping is okay, that it is safer than smoking.

However, both e-cigarettes and regular cigarettes contain nicotine, which research suggests may be as addictive as heroin and cocaine. What’s worse, says Dr. Blaha, many e-cigarette users get even more nicotine than they would from a tobacco product — stores sell extra-strength cartridges, which have a higher concentration of nicotine, or users can increase the e-cigarette voltage to get a greater hit of the substance.

Vaping has not been around long enough for our society to fully know the long-term effects, and while doctors don’t yet have the answers about all these strange lung disease cases and deaths, it seems obvious that something harmful is happening. So, please, Cardinals, don’t vape!