For the first time, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said it suspects vaping THC, a compound in marijuana—is tied to the hundreds of lung illnesses and at least 12 deaths that have been reported across the country. During a press briefing on Friday, CDC officials said the latest findings of their investigation suggest THC products play a role in the outbreak.
Previously, the CDC reported that many of the sick people reported using THC in their vape pens, but officials stopped short of tying the illnesses to the drug. We’re here to explain to you today what exactly THC is and its effects on your body.
THC Could Be Behind Vaping Deaths and Illnesses – Here’s why?
What is THC?
THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is the chemical responsible for most of marijuana’s psychological effects. It acts much like the cannabinoid chemicals made naturally by the body, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). THC attaches to sensory receptors and activates them and affects a person’s memory, pleasure, movements, thinking, concentration, coordination, and sensory and time perception,
One drag is one step closer to death
There are 805 confirmed and probable cases of lung injury tied to vaping, according to the CDC. The CDC has also reported 12 deaths tied to vaping, but it expects that number to rise as state and local officials report this kind of deaths to the CDC. The Associated Press counted 13 vaping deaths so far. The CDC continues to suggest that people consider not using e-cigarettes at all, especially ones that contain THC.
Effects of vaping
In data collected from more than 500 patients, 77% reported using THC products or using both THC and nicotine. About 36% reported using only products with THC. The CDC said 16% of patients said they only vaped nicotine and not THC. This information is based on self-reports from patients.