Severe lung damage may be linked to vaping, health officials say

Severe lung damage may be linked to vaping, health officials say

MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) - Minnesota health officials say severe lung damage has been reported among young people and it may be linked to vaping.

Children’s Minnesota has reported finding four cases of lung injury in the Minneapolis area potentially related to vaping.

The Minnesota Department of Health says the cases are similar to recent cases reported in Wisconsin and Illinois, but it's too soon to say whether the cases are connected.

The Health Department is asking health care providers and parents to be on the lookout for vaping as a possible cause of unexplained breathing problems.

“It’s really scary because there is a great deal of unknown. What we do know is it can interfere with brain development," said Nicole Fischbach, a family nurse practitioner. "That occurs up until the age 25 so when the youth, particularly middle school age, high school or young college students are using vaping it can cause problems with learning, brain development and concentration. They are also more at risk to abuse other drugs or nicotine or cigarettes.”

In Minnesota, some cases have resulted in patients being admitted to the intensive care unit.

Officials don't know the names of the products.

The department says use of both nicotine and marijuana-based products were reported.

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