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Six more cases of lung illness related to vaping in Delaware this month

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James Dawson
/
Delaware Public Media

Delaware’s Division of Public Health is reporting more vaping-related illnesses in the state.

Six more people have become sick in Delaware over the past month as a result of e-cigarette use.

The total number of vaping-related illnesses statewide is now 17 with one death. 

As of Oct. 29, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report 1,888 vaping-related illnesses nationwide with 37 deaths.

Delaware’s Medical Director Dr. Rick Hong says state agencies are continuing to work closely with the CDC to assist in the investigation into the cause of the outbreak.

“We are looking for cases actively on a weekly basis and we are obtaining specimens for possible testing to cooperate with this investigation,” said Hong.  

Several other states have recently taken measures to regulate or ban e-cigarettes. Delaware lawmakers are working to draft legislation that would ban flavored e-cigs locally. 

Hong warns Delawareans to stop vaping altogether.

“The Division of Public Health strongly encourages that people not use any e-cigarette or vaping products, particularly those containing THC,” said Hong. “Whether THC products are legal or illegal, the use of regular THC products has been reported in cases of severe lung injury in other states.”  

Hong says most cases involve the use of THC or a mixture of THC and nicotine, but some have resulted from nicotine use alone. He adds some cases include gastrointestinal issues but most involve shortness of breath or a cough.

Of the 17 illnesses in Delaware nine people are from New Castle County, three are from Kent and five are from Sussex. Their ages are between 15 and 65. 

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