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  • Writer's pictureBreathe Free Oregon

EVALI: epidemic of e-cigarette or vaping product use-associated lung injury

In 2019 and 2020 nearly 3000 people were hospitalized with severe lung damage from vaping which became "known as the epidemic of e-cigarette, or vaping, product use associated with lung injury (EVALI)". Most of the cases were attributed to vitamin E Acetate (VEA) which is often added to illegal cannabis products to speed travel of THC from the lungs to the brain, The CDC tracked EVALI until February 2020 then stopped, but "harm from vaping, including EVALI, has continued." Later in 2020 the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics assigned a diagnostic code, U07.0 for use by healthcare professionals in EVALI diagnosis. EVALI includes signs/symptoms such as: shortness of breath, low oxygen levels, diminished lung function, CT scan showing inflammation, often a diffuse hazy, opaque appearance ("known as 'ground glass'), and GI symptoms such as abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting and resultant weight loss.


Author: Lisa Gillespie




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