Health department reports Utah’s first vaping-related death

Utah News

File image: Young man holding and vaping an e-cigarette

SALT LAKE CITY — A Salt Lake County resident has died of a vaping-related lung injury, according to the Utah Department of Health.

The case is Utah’s first death attributed to an injury related to vaping.

“The individual was under the age of 30 and died at home without being hospitalized prior to their death. The UDOH Office of the Medical Examiner made the final determination as to the cause of death,” a news release from the Utah Department of Health said.

Public health officials determined the deceased had vaped THC.

“This death is a sad reminder of the severity of these unexplained illnesses,” said Dr. Angela Dunn, UDOH state epidemiologist, in the news release. “Based on what we know about this outbreak and what may be contributing to it, our best advice to the public is to stop vaping products that contain THC.”

As of this week, the Utah Department of Health reports there are 76 cases of vaping-related lung injuries in Utah, and another 14 potential cases are under investigation.

The patients more than 90 percent of the cases were hospitalized, and many of them required treatment in intensive care units, UDOH reports. Patients in 94 percent of the Utah cases reported they had vaped THC.

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