Vaping Illness: 26 Cases Found in Tennessee, Still No Cause Known

Twenty-six people in Tennessee have now been diagnosed with a lung illness that is believed to be caused by vaping – a spike of 16 cases in the past week.

Fourteen cases have been detected in Middle Tennessee, said Elizabeth Hart, spokeswoman for the health department. Eleven cases from East Tennessee. Only one is from West Tennessee.

The new Tennessee cases were announced Thursday amid growing fear over a nationwide outbreak of vapingrelated illness. The Centers of Disease Control and Prevention has recorded 530 cases across 38 states. Seven deaths have been confirmed in six states, but none in Tennessee.

The CDC reports that all of these cases have been linked to patients smoking e-cigarettes or vaping nicotine or THC products. Scientists who are studying the outbreak have been unable to find a specific cause because no single product or substance is linked to all the cases.

Symptoms include cough, shortness of breath and fatigue, fever, chest pain, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea, according to The Tennessee Department of Health. Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital has also reported patients with severe pneumonia and one patient who had to be put on life support during treatment.

Brett Kelman is the health care reporter for The Tennessean. He can be reached at 615-259-8287 or at brett. kelman@tennessean.com. Follow him on Twitter at @brettkelman.

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