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Today the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) finally confirmed that the vast majority of patients with vaping-related respiratory illnesses have reported using cannabis products, typically purchased on the black market. Among 514 patients for whom the information was available, the CDC found, 77 percent reported using THC products. Just 16 percent said they had vaped only nicotine, although the types, sources, and brands of the products were not identified.
Since people may be reluctant to admit illegal drug use, the true rate of THC vaping among the patients with respiratory symptoms is almost certainly higher. Prior data from several states indicated that 83 percent to 100 percent of patients reported that they had vaped THC.
CDC - Study - Interviews - Patients - Wisconsin
Another CDC study, based on interviews with 86 patients in Wisconsin and Illinois, found that 87 percent "reported using e-cigarette products containing THC." Two-thirds of the THC vapers said they used cartridges "sold under the brand name Dank Vapes," one of several "largely counterfeit brands with common packaging that is easily available online and that is used by distributors to market THC-containing cartridges with no obvious centralized production or distribution."
In light of this information, the main thrust of which has been apparent for at least a month, it is harder than ever to justify the insinuation that legal e-cigarettes are to blame for the lung disease outbreak, which involves 805 cases and 12 deaths by the CDC's latest count. While 16 percent of the patients in the CDC's study of 514 cases said they vaped only nicotine, those self-reports may not be reliable given the sensitivity of the subject. In any case, there is no indication so far that any of the patients were using legal e-cigarettes, as opposed to black-market pods or e-liquids, which may pose special hazards.
CDC - Findings - Sense
The CDC's findings make sense, since...
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