An 18-year-old man died of respiratory problems. “The investigation must continue to determine the exact circumstances of this death,” said the authorities.
This is the first case in Belgium: an 18-year-old man died in Belgium from a respiratory problem attributed by the authorities to vaping with a mixture of harmful: “There is no other explanation for such a severe pneumonia in this patient”, said Health Minister Maggie De Block on Thursday 14 November. The Minister’s office then made a reservation to the statement, referring to a presumed link with the use of electronic cigarettes, without 100% certainty for the time being.
She was questioned by Members of the European Parliament after several press reports had revealed the recent death of a man from Brussels. The young man had used an electronic cigarette with cannabidiol (CBD), a legal cannabis derived product that has no mind altering properties, but which can be sold on the black market, mixed with potentially dangerous products.
The mixture with vitamin E acetate (oil), which has already led to death in the United States, is suspect. “The investigation must continue to determine the exact circumstances of this death,” said De Block.
Vaping Undoubtedly harmful
In a report published in July, the World Health Organization (WHO) found that e-cigarettes were “undeniably harmful” and could not be recommended as a tool to help people stop smoking.
Health officials on the other side of the Atlantic classified e-cigarettes as “dangerous” for young people, while the number of users in US high school almost doubled between 2017 and 2018. They are even more cautious because a mysterious lung disease outbreak linked to vaping has already affected more than 2,000 Americans and caused 39 deaths in the country.
The cause of the diseases has been attributed by the authorities to one of the ingredients in the liquid refills with THC (the psychoactive substance in cannabis), which is mainly sold on the black market, vitamin E oil.
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