A 15-year-old has become the youngest victim of a lung disease associated with the use of e-cigarettes. Officials with the Dallas County of Health and Human Services made the tragic announcement and said that teen, who was not identified, suffered from a "chronic underlying medical condition."
Since June, roughly 2,500 people across the country have been diagnosed with what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has called E-cigarette or Vaping Associated Lung Injury (EVALI). There have been 57 deaths, with the victims ranging in age from 15 to 75. The CDC believes that the lung illness is caused by black market vape cartridges that are cut with vitamin E acetate.
"Reporting a death in a teen due to EVALI is so tragic," said DCHHS Director Dr. Philip Huang. "We are seeing that severe lung damage, and even death, can occur with just short term use of these products."
The news of the teen's death comes as government officials are working to crack down on the rampant increase in the number of young people who are vaping. The FDA recently passed a new rule that bans most fruit- and mint-flavored nicotine vaping products, while Congress passed a law raising the age to buy tobacco products to 21 across the country.