A PATIENT who developed lung disease after vaping has died, according to health officials.
The death in America is believed to be the first of its kind in the world and has triggered concerns about the safety of vaping.
The UK government has previously promoted vaping as an alternative to traditional tobacco smoking.
Authorities haven’t identified the man who died but he is known to have lived in the state of Illinois and was between the ages of 17 and 38 at the time of his death.
The Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says nearly 200 people have contracted severe respiratory illnesses after vaping.
Every one of those affected was an adult or teenager who had used some kind of vaping device or electronic cigarette.
Doctors say their illnesses looked like inhalation injuries where the lungs reacted to a caustic substance.
All the cases have been recorded since June 2018.
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CDC Director Robert Redfield said: “This tragic death in Illinois reinforces the serious risk associated with e-cigarette products.
“Vaping exposes users to many different substances for which we have little information about related harms — including flavourings, nictoine, cannabinoids and solvents.”
Electronic cigarettes have been thought of as less dangerous than tobacco cigarette and Public Health England say they are an effective tool to help people give up smoking.
But academics in Britain say more research is needed into their long-term effects and regulation needs to be increased.
There are also concerns about the number of young people who take up vaping because the products still contain the addictive substance nicotine.
Some vaping flavours used in vaping devices have even been found to produce a toxic reaction.
The UK is currently bound by EU regulations on the amount of nicotine an e-cigarette can have, while levels in the US are much higher.
News of the death in Illinois comes after a teenage vaper’s lungs collapsed in Texas.
And experts recently warned that just one e-cigarette can immediately increase your risk of having a heart attack or stroke because of damage to the body’s blood vessels.
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