More clues point to chemical compound in US vaping illnesses

Published 4:26 am Wednesday, November 27, 2019

NEW YORK — Health officials say they have more evidence that a certain chemical compound is a culprit in a national outbreak of vaping illnesses.

A study released Tuesday analyzed vaping cartridges gathered in Minnesota during the outbreak this year and cartridges seized in that state last year. The newer cartridges contained the compound vitamin E acetate, but none of the older ones did.

The study was small and included just a few dozen products. But the finding echoes another study that found the compound in the damaged lungs of 29 patients across the country.

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Nearly 2,300 Americans who vape have gotten sick since March, many of them teens and young adults. Vitamin E acetate has been used as a thickener in illicit vaping products that contain THC, the high-inducing part of marijuana.