Georgia and Florida health officials have both reported their first vaping-related deaths, bringing the total number of U.S. fatalities from a lung disease that resembles a rare form of pneumonia to at least 11.
More than 500 people are known to have fallen ill with a mysterious lung disease after smoking e-cigarettes in the US, but officials said hundreds of additional cases had been reported in the past week alone.
Currently 38 states have recorded cases of the illness, with lives lost in eight states.
While most patients have reported a history of using products containing THC, the psychoactive compound in cannabis, the patient who died in Georgia on Wednesday reported only “heavy nicotine vaping”.
Those with the illness are suffering respiratory problems, including coughing, shortness of breath and chest pain. Some also experienced vomiting, fatigue and fevers.
Two thirds of those with the illness are 18 to 34 years old, while 16 per cent are under 18, the CDC said.
The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC has more than 100 officials investigating the cause of the mystery illness, and has warned citizens against smoking e-cigarette products until more is known, particularly if modified or bought “off the street”.