The US Food and Drug Administration UU He announced that he is investigating a possible link between seizures and vaping after receiving dozens of voluntary reports over a period of almost 10 years.
The agency said on Wednesday that after observing a "slight but noticeable" increase in voluntary reports related to seizures, it referred to poison control centers and its own incident reports that date back almost a decade and uncovered 35 cases of seizures that specifically mentioned vaping. The FDA said that most of these cases were in young adults or children.
In a statement on the FDA announcement, outgoing Commissioner Scott Gottlieb reiterated that electronic cigarettes are not exempt from health risks, especially in young people. However, Gottlieb stressed that more information is needed on any possible correlation between electronic cigarettes and seizures, including additional investigation and incident reports.
"While 35 cases may not seem like much compared to the total number of people who use electronic cigarettes, however, we are concerned about these reported cases," said Gottlieb. "We also recognize that not all cases can be reported. We believe that these 35 cases justify a scientific investigation on whether there is in fact a connection. "
Among the 35 reported cases of seizures related to vaping, some cases were in people who had previously experienced them. The FDA also noted that some cases involved a combination of vape products with other substances, including amphetamines or weeds.
Liz Mair, strategist at Vapers United, said that "mixing different products that contain different chemicals in general is not advisable, so it does not mix certain pharmaceutical products with alcohol consumption."
"The FDA should investigate all of this, but it is important to keep in mind that the data as reported does not support conclusions at this stage and people should be careful to come to a conclusion that the use of steam means seizures," he added.
Gottlieb said the agency decided to share the information publicly because it is FDA's job to "communicate possible safety concerns badociated with the products we regulate and that are under scientific investigation by the agency." He said the announcement was also intended to encourage more people to report adverse health effects that they believe are related to vaping.
The FDA said that anyone who thinks they are having a seizure should seek medical attention immediately.[FDA via The Verge]