First vaping-related illness confirmed in Snohomish County

It’s the sixth case in the state. Nationwide, 530 people have made similar reports — seven have died.

EVERETT — The first vaping-related illness has been confirmed in Snohomish County.

About 530 similar cases have been reported across the country in the past few months. This is the sixth in the state. Seven people outside of Washington have died from their symptoms.

No single product has been linked to every case.

The Snohomish County woman is in her 20s. Other details have not been made public, such as her hometown, where she bought the product, what hospital she went to and whether her symptoms were caused by vaping nicotine or THC, the mind-altering substance in marijuana.

She purchased the vape liquid from a legal retailer and the packaging did not appear to be tampered with, according to the Snohomish Health District.

Her symptoms included shortness of breath and difficulty breathing. She was admitted to a local hospital in August, and has since been released.

The health district found out because of heightened awareness nationwide, spokesperson Heather Thomas said.

“Our staff was going through hospital discharge databases to see patients who met the criteria,” she said. “After talking with the patient, it was determined she was a case within the state.”

It’s likely there have been earlier instances that have gone undetected, Thomas said.

People who use vaping devices should consider quitting, said Dr. Chris Spitters, the district’s interim health officer.

“The safety of these products is uncertain at best, and their contents are not regulated by consumer protection agencies,” he said.

Those who do use these products should seek medical help if they experience fever, nausea, coughing, chest pain or shortness of breath.

Health care providers are encouraged to notify the Snohomish Health District of patients with unexplained lung disease who also have used any kind of e-cigarette within 90 days.

Earlier this month, President Donald Trump said the federal government will act to ban flavors in vape liquid, to deter children from using it.

Those rules could only apply to nicotine products because it’s federally regulated, unlike THC.

About 16% of people who have reported these kinds of symptoms nationwide have been younger than 18 years old, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Stephanie Davey: 425-339-3192; Twitter: @stephrdavey.

Talk to us

More in Local News

Mill Creek Police at the scene of a fatal car accident on Friday, Oct. 15, 2021. (Mill Creek Police)
Police investigating Mill Creek collision where man died

A stretch of 35th Ave SE was expected to be closed for a few hours Friday night.

The aftermath of a fire that damaged a unit at the Villas at Lakewood apartment complex in Marysville on Saturday. (Marysville Fire District)
2 families displaced by Marysville apartment fire

Nobody was injured when the fire broke out Saturday morning on 27th Avenue NE.

Gold Bar man airlifted after trying to start fire with gas

The man suffered severe burns after he used gasoline to start a fire in his yard.

Get ready for La Niña and a soggy winter in Snohomish County

After a hot, dry summer, Washington feels like Washington again. Damp. Gray. Normal.

Voting thing
Decision time: Ballots on their way to a half-million voters

Races for mayor, city councils and school boards are focal point of the Nov. 2 election in Snohomish County.

Executive Officer Joseph Gunta reaches out to hug his daughter Charlotte, 2, after arriving on the USS John S. McCain in Everett on Friday, Oct. 15, 2021. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
After 24 years abroad, USS John S. McCain calls Everett home

The ship brings with it over 300 sailors and their families to the area from Yokosuka, Japan.

Everett firefighter who got cancer settles for $1.2M

It marks the end of a decade-long saga that started when Michael Weaver was diagnosed with melanoma in 2011.

Community Transit is preparing to shift commuter buses that go to the University of Washington in Seattle to connect with Link light rail in Northgate next year. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Union: Community Transit vaccine mandate puts jobs in ‘jeopardy’

Meanwhile, at King County Metro, a similar mandate has significantly boosted vaccination rates.

Kevin Gallagher (from the Snohomish County Official Local Voters’ Pamphlet November 2, 2021 General Election)
Kevin Gallagher, a Marysville City Council candidate, dies

Kevin Gallagher, 52, died at home of natural causes. He was challenging incumbent Councilmember Tom King.

Most Read