Health Care

Does e-cigarette use cause seizures? Feds investigating

Does e-cigarette use cause seizures? Feds investigating”

The cases under investigation occurred between 2010 and 2019, and the FDA has noticed a "slight but noticeable" increase in reports since June.

Some of the seizure victims were vaping for the first time, while others had been doing it for a while.

"Seizures or convulsions are known potential side effects of nicotine toxicity", says the FDA, which adds that the recent trend potentially linking them with e-cigarettes could warrant an emerging safety issue. E-cigarette users also might be inadvertently or deliberately inhaling more nicotine than normal. It's too early at this time to say whether e-liquid nicotine devices can be named as the cause of these seizures. The agency said it's possible that some e-cigarette products make it possible for people to inhale a significant amount of nicotine quickly.

"While 35 cases may not seem like much compared to the total number of people using e-cigarettes, we are nonetheless concerned by these reported cases", FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb and Principal Deputy Commissioner Amy Abernethy said in a statement.

The agency stressed that it's not yet clear if the e-cigarettes caused the seizures.

The agency is calling on doctors and the general public to report cases of seizures tied to e-cigarette use to better understand the link. Unfortunately, most reports from users didn't include any info about the product brand used in proximity to the medical event. Indeed, a few of the patients reported use of other substances in addition to e-cigarettes, such as marijuana or amphetamines.

Last month, the FDA had released formal plans to curb the sale of flavored e-cigarettes, which involve restricting the availability of flavors other than tobacco, mint and menthol, to stores or online portals where strong age-verification protocols are in place.

In some cases, the seizures happened after the user took a few puffs; in other cases, the seizures happened up to one day after use.

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