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The Vaping corner - for users, haters, and the curious........

juddles

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Hi there all,

there has been much discussion on vaping recently, and as one of those vigorously involved in the discussions, I wished to create a separate thread so that this topic does not keep contaminating other threads.

My intent is that in this one we can discuss all social and health aspects of vaping and e-cigarette usage. And it's impact on fellow human beings. I will create another specific thread for the laws in various countries of the use and importation of this stuff - please do not discuss that here.

My personal situation is that I do "vape". I have used this to stop heavy smoking, and love the change. Thus I see the positive side. But I also detest when vapers or smokers make others suffer their habit. And I am also dead-set against vaping being made attractive to new youngsters. I would also like to educate (or highlight to ) non-users the different things that constitute vaping, and why the current stories coming out of the USA are so deceitful.

I also absolutely abhor bad science and bad journalism - which is why I feel compelled to get involved in the current talk about vaping.

So to kick this thread off - today yet another horror (the horror being IMHO the quality of the article) : Her son nearly died from vaping. This is her message to Australian parents
 

juddles

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As posted by @Major in another thread: the latest US government advice: Respiratory Illnesses Associated with Use of Vaping Products

This supports my understanding that contrary to media hype, these deaths do not necessarily have anything to do with vaping, and if they do, it is quite possible that it is due to using vaping techniques to ingest black-market cannabinoid substances.
 
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MEL_Traveller

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It did seem odd that after many years, and some 10-30 million vapers in the USA, that 450 people would get sick in a relatively short period of time due to regular vaping.
 

joyjoy22

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I have quit cigarette smoking 2 years ago, and now I need to stop using vape after the incident that I read and watch on the news.
 

juddles

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I have quit cigarette smoking 2 years ago, and now I need to stop using vape after the incident that I read and watch on the news.
joyjoy, it seems very certain that unless you are vaping illegal cannabinoid street concoctions, those news articles are not applicable.
 

juddles

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Responding to @Vic from another thread, who said : "Well actually I got this from an expert doctor being interviewed on Radio National. That service my taxes pay for that provides me with reliable information. They did mention the THC link, but made it clear that the vapour, the extra fluids introduced to the lung is the issue.
No wonder scientists are ignored by society if people so easily dismiss them as tabloid news.
Yep, outrageous that I mostly avoid the tabloids... "

I have watched the whole progression of this latest vaping-deaths topic that has sparked a huge amount of interest. Being a vaper myself I have a very strong personal interest in the matter - for my own health, NOT to promote the habit itself. Because of my interest I like to look a bit deeper than those omni-present regurgitated fake news articles that plague us all. So when I read that suddenly vaping was "killing people" I wanted to know as much as I could about it, and read everything I could find on the web.

What I rapidly saw was that almost all the articles had common source articles, and that as the articles were regurgitated they became more and more bold in stating such things as "confirmed deaths due to vaping", when there was actually no such source for these statements or conclusions. And I also saw that endless "experts" such as some doctors were seizing on this to support their anti-vaping stances. I think this shows that there are very strong personal positions in the subject of vaping - and I suspect that these have been transferred across pretty much directly from the decades-long fight against actual smoking. Hence the willingness of even an "expert doctor" to fall in the trap of believing things that have absolutely no scientific basis.

Within weeks of a handful of deaths in the USA, the media is now full of anti-vaping stories. But how can this be, when the truth of the matter is that the investigation into the cause of those deaths is yet in progress? There have been no findings. And the further they look into it the more it appears that this has nothing to do with normal vaping, but rather the use of vaping devices to inhale dodgy cannabinoid products? (and that as of the latest, their chief suspect is "Vitamin E acetate" - a substance used to thicken THC oil to make it seem better quality in druggy liquids - something NOT used in standard commercial vaping products).

I think that the scare stories may have a good effect, if they stop some teenagers taking up vaping. But maybe those teenagers will just smoke cigarettes and weed instead now?? But the real damage such atrocious reporting does is that it may lead some people back to smoking tobacco, a far more harmful habit.
 

juddles

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Just giving an update, but I suspect this will fall on deaf ears.

In these last few weeks the deaths and illnesses of some were seized upon by many to try to make vaping a bad thing. The news stories were told, the ideas were spread, but now that there is evidence that is was a crock of lies, I have no doubt that the stories will simply disappear rather than having corrections made.

The current state of affairs is that it is believed that the illnesses (and a couple of deaths) have nothing whatsoever to do with normal vaping. Rather they are suspected to be caused by a cutting agent that illegal makers of druggy stuff use. This is not just errant vapers that want to use this technique to do cannabis, but even more so it is those that have been buying illicit drug street products. So the harm appears to come from a "cutting agent". That this has been stated by the media to be "deaths from vaping" is obscene. It is completely nonsensical, wrong, factually incorrect, and harmful.

Where in the Australian media are they publishing the stories of the people in the USA who have already been identified and charged because of this? The drug dealers that have used tocopehryl acetate to "cut" cannabis oil, as other drug vendors do with other illicit products?

Where in the Australian media have they advised that this spate of illnesses has only occurred in the USA where such druggy practices occur? That in other countries with even greater history of vaping this does not exist?

Of course they will not publish truth. There is no gain in doing so.

It is just sheer fake-news crap, but it is what people hear. Even Trump has taken a step back - and he is the master of knee-jerk reaction.
 

Hvr

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Wiley has a view on vaping.

1570158420138.png
 

juddles

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I'm sure @juddles will have a view on this.......

Yes, I have some views :)

The news item is typical trash modern reporting - the acetate was identified as the most likely cause many months ago. So terms such as "first time" and "breakthrough" are just fluff. The only actual new thing (which is in any case an important step) is that the acetate was confirmed to be present in all of a particular set of 29 biological samples from people who were ill or died from what they now call "EVALI" (Ecig VAping Lung Injury)

Another outcome from that intensely-studied set of bio samples was that they did not find any other harmful chemicals. This changes the entire scenario from "vaping related illness" to "illicit drug and blackmarket-cutting-agent related illness" - hardly as interesting or newsworthy no doubt :)

As a person who currently vapes, I have watched this whole episode with keen interest - specifically for my own sake. That this outbreak happened in the USA was lucky in that they were able to devote tremendous effort and resources to it. And the results, despite all this effort, have failed to find any other potentially harmful aspect of vaping.

But this identification of the harmful chemical being something added to "black-market" vaping liquids raises anther concern, which was lightly touched on by that news article..

Australia has so far decided that it should be illegal to make or sell vape liquid containing nicotine. A strange decision when the principal reason for vaping is to get nicotine-addicted people off traditional burnt tobacco. So vapers in this country are forced to import this from overseas sellers via the internet. Luckily there are first rate New Zealand manufacturers that I choose, but no doubt some people may accidentally buy stuff from dodgy sellers that has been "cut" with the acetate.
 

amaroo

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I'm sure @juddles will have a view on this.......

CDC website reports higher numbers for deaths and affected....

 

drron

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Though your CDC link has at the first paragraph-
"CDC has identified vitamin E acetate as a chemical of concern among people with e-cigarette, or vaping, product use associated lung injury (EVALI). Recent CDC laboratory testing of bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid samples (fluid samples collected from the lungs) from 29 patients with EVALI submitted to CDC from 10 states found vitamin E acetate in all of the samples. Vitamin E acetate might be used as an additive, most notably as a thickening agent in THC-containing e-cigarette, or vaping, products. "
 

amaroo

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Well the stuff is killing kids quicker than a $2 PHD can come up with a reason it isn't.

A brief history on smoking....

 

drron

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This illness is an acute illness unlike the emphysema and cancers plus heart disease and strokes caused by cigarette smoking.It is due to a contaminant usually found in illicit vaping liquids.
 

juddles

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This illness is an acute illness unlike the emphysema and cancers plus heart disease and strokes caused by cigarette smoking.It is due to a contaminant usually found in illicit vaping liquids.
Drron, I think most people just want to hear bad things about vaping - a bit like the Climate Change thing - everyone starts out with set views and will ignore any detail that does not fit.

Being immersed in the life history of being once a smoker, once a non-smoker, and now vaping, over various countries, I have not found anywhere as violently and rabidly anti-smoking as here in Australia. Although there are many many true and good reasons to oppose smoking, things just went way too far.... now it seems very clear that many of the anti-smoking group are not content to just stop others smoking - they want to punish and prevent anything even vaguely similar. It is like the hatred is so great they would absolutely HATE for an ex-smoker to be able to quietly and safely indulge in something different - as "vaping" is.

I am all for common decency - ie not letting a habit affect others - so I agree entirely with those that express displeasure of having to walk through clouds of vape "smoke", and those that have cretins vaping inside offices around other people. But that is just things that only some vapers do.

Humans enjoy many a pleasure that is neither necessary nor good for them. Everything from drinking beer to riding motorcycles. My attitude to all these things is the same - let everyone do what they want, as long as it does not affect others. And do not cast blanket judgement on the actions of some idiots.

Vaping (God I hate the term - it sounds wrong) is simply a modern invention where people can do something that is far better for them than actually smoking. There are absolutely no known dangers in normal vaping. Sure, there may be some long term effects that have not yet come to light despite vapers having done it for decades now, but "we" as people all do so many things that are already proven to have harmful effects - everything from eating cheeseburgers to buying groceries wrapped in plastic. But, with vaping the minds of so many are already set. And I think that the initial reporting of the USA spate of acetate-injured people was relished by the anti-everything brigade. Because it was the first time that a possible health effect of vaping appeared. I suspect that now that it has been identified that it has nothing to do with normal vaping, that brigade will not want to hear any more.

Associating acetate-induced "EVALI" cases with vaping was fun, and initially a just concern, but it is incorrect and very misleading. That vaping devices have been used by some to inhale drugs is the reality. Just to throw in a comparison, it is a bit like if Orchy orange juice bottles were used to make bongs to smoke cannabis - a common thing - the news articles would have been reporting that orange Orchy users were dying like flies. When it had nothing to do with orange juice....
 

juddles

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Further to the above, I want to expand on the significance of the recently-released CDC studies..

After the initial interest in these cases of EVALI, the main focus of investigations was to try to identify common factors, in the desire to track down the source of the lung injuries. It was identified very early on that most sufferrers admitted to using their vape devices to ingest THC or other cannabis products. But there were also a small percentage that did not admit to THC use. This clouded the issue a bit. The initial research revealed that about 3/4 of the patients admitted to THC use, but there still remained the other 1/4 who claimed not to have. And the testing done of the products and gear submitted reflected this - not all contained acetate. Hence the desire to rule out any other possible chemicals. And the delay in identifying the reality.

The problem with this was that these tests were done only on the products and devices actually declared by sufferers - and it is not hard to imagine why many would not be 100% forthcoming in this. Vaping with nicotine is one thing, but buying and using drug juice off the streets is far more embarrassing. And thus there remained the statistical reality that some victims of EVALI were "only" declaring use of normal vape liquids, not ones with THC (which often have acetate used as a cutting agent). But this last study was a bombshell - because rather than rely on declared and submitted products, they directly took samples from the lung tissue of affected people. And the results suddenly show 100% of cases have acetate.

It is possible that some back-yard dealers use acetate even in non-cannabis juices, so it is possible that some of the victims were truthfully reporting that they did not use THC in their vapes, but the picture, even though already very much suspected, has now become crystal clear.

All victims have been using products that have acetate. Most if not all is in products where the user is buying cannabis infused juice. And acetate is used only by backyard producers - with the same peril involved for drug users everywhere. These illicit producers "cut" cannabis vape juice the same way cocaine re-sellers cut coke - using whatever meets the purpose - laundry powder, boric acid, creatine, etc etc. And now acetate, despite it doing the job nicely visually (it is like honey) has been shown to be lethal.
 

MEL_Traveller

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Agree with juddles on this. It would have been remarkable had vaping itself been the issue, With 10+ million vapers in the USA plus probably equal numbers in other parts of the world.

i wouldnt' be recommending non-smokers start vaping, but as a quitting aid I think it's one of the best.

I wonder if some of those in the States were concerned about health insurance if they admitted to illegal activity such as smoking THC? A quick google search suggests some health insurance covers might have an exclusion clause.
 

juddles

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.......wonder if some of those in the States were concerned about health insurance if they admitted to illegal activity such as smoking THC? ..
That is my belief also - and possibly why the CDC, being aware of this issue, has now focused on the direct samples.
 

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