AP NEWS

5th Massachusetts resident dies from vaping illness

February 26, 2020 GMT

BOSTON (AP) — A fifth Massachusetts resident has died of a vaping-related lung injury, state public health officials said Wednesday.

The patient, a man in his 40s from Suffolk County, reported vaping THC, an active ingredient found in marijuana, the state Department of Public Health said. No additional identifying information about the patient was released.

Massachusetts has now reported 46 confirmed cases of e-cigarette or vaping-associated lung injury to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention since Sept. 11, when the state began requiring clinicians to report any unexplained lung injury in a patient to the department.

In addition, 81 probable cases in Massachusetts have been reported to the CDC.

Of the five deaths, three have been connected to the vaping of THC and two to vaping nicotine products alone. One of the five patients reported vaping both THC and nicotine.

Federal officials have identified a thickening agent added to illicit THC vaping liquids as the culprit behind the “vast majority” of the lung injuries nationwide.

State public health officials did not say whether the latest patient to die vaped product brought through a licensed dispensary or through the black market.