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DC Health Department Confirms First Vaping-Associated Death

Thursday, October 24, 2019
DC Health Advises Residents to Stop Using E-Cigarettes

(Washington, DC) The District of Columbia Department of Health (DC Health) has confirmed one death associated with vaping. As of October 22, 2019, 1,604* cases of e-cigarette, or vaping, product use associated lung injury (EVALI) have been reported to CDC from 49 states (all except Alaska), the District of Columbia, and 1 U.S. territory.

DC Health urges District residents to refrain from using all e-cigarette and vaping products until further notice. Cannabis or THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) vape-products that are obtained off the street may pose the greatest risk.

Symptoms of Vaping-Associated Lung Injury:

  • Frequently reported symptoms include shortness of breath, cough, chest pain, nausea, diarrhea or vomiting
  • Many patients have reported initial symptoms such as unexplained weight loss, fatigue, abdominal pain, or fever
  • Severe cases have required admission to the hospital
  • Some patients have reported that their symptoms developed over a few days, while others have reported that their symptoms developed over several weeks. A lung infection does not appear to be causing the symptoms.

No single product or chemical substance has been linked to all cases. Local, State and National Health agencies are actively investigating the outbreak.

On October 26, vaping devices and liquids will be accepted along with unused and expired prescription medications at all Drug Take Back Day locations. Find your nearest Take Back Day location: takebackday.dea.gov.

For more information on e-cigarettes, visit: www.cdc.gov/tobacco/basic_information/e-cigarettes/index.htm

For more information on the outbreak, visit: www.cdc.gov/tobacco/basic_information/e-cigarettes/severe-lung-disease.html

For the Residents of DC

If you are concerned about your health after vaping or using an e-cigarette:

  • Contact your healthcare provider, or
  • Call the National Capital Poison Control Center at 1 (800) 222-1222

For Healthcare Providers

Promptly report any suspected cases you have seen since July to the District of Columbia Department of Health using the Notifiable Disease and Condition Case Report Form.

To report suspected cases: https://redcap.doh.dc.gov/surveys/index.php/surveys/?s=DHNA4X8LJC

* The increase in lung injury cases from last week represents both new patients and recent reporting of previously-identified patients to CDC.