Long Beach health officials issue warning after two cases of vaping injuries

Health officials in Long Beach issued a warning about vaping after receiving two reported cases of Vaping Associated Pulmonary Injury (VAPI) in the month of August in the city.

Both individuals have since recovered, but the warning comes after more than 500 cases of the illness have been reported throughout the country, with seven reported deaths from VAPI, officials said.

“Anyone presently vaping or considering vaping should be aware of the serious potential health risks associated with this practice,” said Anissa Davis, city health officer.

The symptoms of VAPI include coughing, difficulty breathing, fever and in some cases vomiting and diarrhea.

City health department officials, the California Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are working together to monitor VAPI cases.

Cases of the illness have involved vaping nicotine, CBD, marijuana and synthetic marijuana, according to officials. All cases have reported using an e-cigarette product or vaping and many have reported using e-cigarette products containing THC, while others have reported using both THC and nicotine, and some have reported using products containing only nicotine.

The legal marijuana industry is facing counterfeit vape pens that aren’t tested and could be making people sick, according to a recent Los Angeles Times article.

Health officials are advising residents to consider not using e-cigarette or vaping products.

“If you have recently used an e-cigarette or vaping product and you develop gastrointestinal or respiratory symptoms, see a healthcare provider immediately,” officials advise.

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Valerie Osier is the Social Media & Newsletter Manager for the Long Beach Post. She started at the Post in 2018 as a breaking news reporter. She’s a Riverside native who found her love for journalism while at community college. She graduated from the Cal State Long Beach journalism program in 2017 and covered the Palos Verdes Peninsula for the Daily Breeze prior to coming to the Post. She lives in Long Beach with her husband and two cats.