Flavors and Marketing Make E-cigarettes Appealing to Youth
- Many e-cigarettes come in fruit, candy, and other kid-friendly flavors, such as mango, fruit and crème.
- A majority of youth e-cigarette users report using flavored varieties, most youth e-cigarette users first start using e-cigarettes with a flavored variety, and flavors are the primary reason youth report using e-cigarettes.
- E-cigarettes are also advertised using the same themes and tactics that have been shown to increase youth initiation of other tobacco products, including cigarettes. In 2016, about 8 in 10 middle school and high school students—more than 20 million youth—said they had seen e-cigarette advertising.
- Widespread advertising for these products, including via media for which advertising for conventional tobacco products is prohibited (e.g., TV), and the lower costs of some of these products relative to conventional cigarettes has contributed to the increase in e-cigarette use among youth.
- Many youth also report using e-cigarettes because they are curious about these new products, and because they believe these products to be less harmful than conventional cigarettes.
E-cigarette or vaping product use-associated lung injury (EVALI)
The illness was first recognized by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) in August 2019 after health department officials across the country began to work together to study cases of severe, sometimes fatal, lung infections that arose suddenly in otherwise healthy individuals
Vitamin E acetate is used as an additive, most notably in THC-containing e-cigarette, or vaping, products. Vitamin E acetate is strongly linked to the EVALI outbreak.
CDC and FDA has recommend that people not use THC-containing e-cigarette, or vaping, products, particularly from informal sources like friends, family, or in-person or online dealers.
THC use has been associated with a wide range of health effects, particularly with prolonged frequent use. The best way to avoid potentially harmful effects is to not use THC-containing e-cigarette, or vaping, products.
As of February 18, 2020, a total of 2,807 hospitalized e-cigarette, or vaping, product use-associated lung injury (EVALI) cases or deaths have been reported. 68 deaths have been confirmed in 29 states and the District of Columbia.
EVALI symptoms include
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pain
- Fever and chills
- Diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting
- Tachycardia (rapid heartbeat)
- Tachypnea (rapid and shallow breathing)
Among the 2,668 hospitalized EVALI cases or deaths reported to CDC (as of January 14, 2020):
- 66% were male
- The median age of patients was 24 years and ranged from 13–85 years.
- By age group category:
- 15% of patients were under 18 years old;
- 37% of patients were 18 to 24 years old;
- 24% of patients were 25 to 34 years old; and
- 24% of patients were 35 years or older.