GALVESTON COUNTY, Texas — A local man has been hospitalized with a serious lung illness following use of e-cigarette products, according to the Galveston County Health District.
This is Galveston County's first publicly reported case of lung illness possibly tied to vaping.
Health officials there said Thursday the man, who is 18 to 22 years old, lives in College Station but is officially a resident of the county. They said his condition fits the profile of other people sickened after using e-cigarettes.
There have been five deaths and more than 450 possible cases of lung illness included in this outbreak, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
On Tuesday the City of Houston reported three patients with lung illnesses that match the same profile.
“This is a serious situation. These are life-threatening illnesses even for those who are otherwise completely healthy,” said Dr. Philip Keiser, Galveston County local health authority. “Youth and young adults should not be using e-cigarette products. Parents need to have this conversation with their children.”
This CDC's investigation is ongoing at this time.
A cause has not been identified, but doctors said all reported cases have a history of using e-cigarette products including devices, liquids, refill pods and/ or cartridges.
“Parents may not even realize their child is using these products. E-cigarette devices come in all shapes and sizes and can look like a pen, a USB stick and other everyday items,” Keiser said. “They are filled with volatile organic compounds, nicotine and other chemicals that are just not safe.”
Some of the symptoms of those sickened by the products include cough, shortness of breath or diarrhea, fatigue, fever or weight loss.