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Dallas County Reports Lung Disease Cases Linked To Vaping

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Associated Press
Dallas County hospitals have reported nine cases of probable or confirmed severe lung disease associated with e-cigarette use.

Dallas County hospitals have reported nine cases of probable or confirmed severe lung disease associated with e-cigarette use. Most of the cases involve young adults — the median age is 19 years old.

Dallas County health officials say medical professionals should immediately report cases of severe lung illness that have unclear causes. They should also report the patients' use of e-cigarettes over the past few months.

The county's advisory follows an alert issued last month by state health officials, who say they're seeing cases of lung disease in Texas adolescents.

Nationally, officials say the number of possible cases of severe breathing illnesses from e-cigarettes or vaping has more than doubled — to 450. That includes as many as five deaths across the country. No deaths have been reported in Texas.

Federal health officials warn against using e-cigarettes or vaping products.

People who do use e-cigarettes should watch for symptoms like a cough, shortness of breath, chest pain, nausea and vomiting.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Eric Aasen is KERA’s managing editor. He helps lead the station's news department, including radio and digital reporters, producers and newscasters. He also oversees keranews.org, the station’s news website, and manages the station's digital news projects. He reports and writes stories for the website and contributes pieces to KERA radio. He's discussed breaking news live on various public radio programs, including The Takeaway, Here & Now and Texas Standard, as well as radio and TV programs in New Zealand and the United Kingdom.