- For months, the US has reported more and more deaths after using e-cigarettes.
- Now, for the CDC health authority, one possible cause of death is becoming more likely: an oil derived from vitamin E.
"This is the first time that we have discovered a potentially worrying chemical in samples from patients with these lung diseases," the agency said. In a study of lung fluid in 29 ill patients from 10 states, the oil, a vitamin E acetate, was detected in all samples.
Vitamin E occurs naturally in various foods such as oils or nuts. Because of its molecular structure, however, the substance can be dangerous when inhaled.
However, further investigations would have to be carried out. It can not be ruled out that other chemicals contribute to the diseases. Recently, there had already been evidence that THC products might play a role. THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is in cannabis and is mainly responsible for the intoxicating effect of the drug.
Diseases exclusively in the USA
So far, 39 people have died in the US after the use of e-cigarettes in the United States, more than 2,000 fell ill. In Europe, no similar increase in lung damage is known so far. The complaints still seem to be limited to users in North America. In European countries, the compositions of e-cigarette ingredients are more strictly regulated than in the US.
Trump wants to regulate e-cigarettes stricter
The US government has announced plans to raise the minimum age for use of e-cigarettes from 18 to 21 years. That will recommend a report to be presented next week, said US President Donald Trump on Friday in the garden of the White House. "We have to take care of our children, that's the most important thing." There will also be recommendations on e-cigarettes with certain flavors, he said. Such e-cigarettes are considered particularly popular with young people.