Making a Case for Regulation of E-liquids.
Just got off the phone with a friend who is in the hospital. He is doing better and hopefully will be back on his feet in a couple of more days. This is what happened.
Five days ago a friend that I introduced to vaping became very ill. At first he thought it was just the flu. But his health rapidly became worse and he ended up in the hospital. Diagnosis: Lipid Pneumonia.
He has never had pneumonia in his life, in fact he has never had any kind of respiratory health problem even though he had been a smoker for 10 years. Doctor asked him if he had been using any nasal spray medication and he told him no. He did however tell the doctor that he had been vaping for the past three months.
The doctor asked if he had seen anything like this before since starting vaping and he told him no he had not. That he actually felt better than ever after he quit smoking and started vaping. So the doctor asked him more questions to try to determine what may have brought on this bought of pneumonia. They eliminated perfumes, spray deodorants(he uses a stick), hairsprays, cooking oils(they do not use spray on cooking oils) and the only thing left was the e-liquid that he had been vaping.
It turns out he had gotten some liquid from one of our mutual friends that had gotten it from a supplier he found online that was selling it dirt cheap from China.
They tested the e-liquid and found it was heavily laced with vegetable oil based flavoring. This is what probably caused him to become ill with Lipid Pneumonia. Lipid Pneumonia is brought on by inhaling oil based liquids. It is fairly rare but is becoming more and more common due to the abundance of newer methods of cold and flu delivery products like nasal sprays that have flooded the market recently. Cooking oils like Pam and such can be another cause of Lipid Pneumonia when the spray oil is vaporized as it comes into contact with a hot frying pan. Inhaling to much of that vapor can cause Lipid Pneumonia.
This is why we do need some kind of regulation on the e-liquids. When we buy liquids we really have no clue what is in them. All we can go on is what the supplier tells us. If they put chemicals and compounds in their e-liquids that can cause harm we should be made aware of this.
Inhaling oil is a bad thing and can kill you.
I do wish that suppliers would start listing exactly what is in their e-liquids on their websites or include a list of compounds when they ship so that the buyer knows exactly what it is they are getting. That way if they lie to us and it is shown that the liquid contained a chemical or compound not on the list and it caused us harm we can point to what they told us and say you lied to me and you put my health and life in danger. I am going to hold you accountable for this.
Currently there is no regulation at all and we take our lives in our own hands when we vape these liquids. If we become ill from vaping an e-liquid with oil based flavorings all we can do is chalk it up to experience and hope it never happens again. We can also stop buying from the supplier. But that is not enough. Because what about the next person that buys from that supplier. They are taking a huge risk as well.
Unfortunately the place the e-liquid was purchased from is basically a clearing house for products made in China, Taiwan and Singapore. So there is no real way to track exactly where the liquid came from other than we know it originated in China due to the markings on the back that say Shenzhen Ltd. If I knew exactly where and what company I would gladly post it so that others do not make the same mistake.
This in no way implies that Chinese made e-liquids are not safe. I am just saying that when we purchase these liquids it doesn't matter where they come from because what matters is that we have a safe product whether it is made in the US, France, England or China...we need to know if it is a safe product.
I for one am going to take the time to start making sure that I only buy from reputable sources. Ones that are not afraid to tell me what is in the e-liquids I vape.
This is not the first time I have heard of someone coming down with Lipid Pneumonia from vaping. This is like the forth time and I am sure there have been many others I have not heard of. We the consumers need to start being vocal and start being proactive in this market if it is to develop and flourish. Demanding regulation on suppliers to notify consumers what is in these e-liquids is a good start at making this a safer alternative to smoking.
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