Since e-cigarettes have appeared on the market as a substitute for conventional cigarettes, they have been trending in the news and on various social platforms.
More and more scientific evidence shows that 'vaping' is not harmless to health, although it is still necessary to determine which of its components are harmful.
A paper published in the journal ‘Environmental Research’ found that smokers of e-cigarettes have various inorganic elements in their blood. Some of these elements are considered toxic and some elements and their effect on the body still remain unknown.
THC and vitamin E acetate
The US FDA (Food and Drug Administration) is examining an outbreak of 39 confirmed deaths, and 2,000 cases where people were hospitalised with severe injuries because of e-cigarettes.
Vitamin E acetate was found in samples of the lung tissue of those affected. They also found substances such as THC (tetrahydrocannabinol, a psychotropic derivative of cannabis) and nicotine in some cases.
The FDA released a statement indicating that no product or substance has been found to be involved in all cases, indicating that several components of electronic cigarettes are likely to have caused the death. Although THC is known to be present in most cases.
The American agency has identified a substance that was not initially in the spotlight, but that could have the key: vitamin E acetate. This element can form balls or clots when entering our lungs and prevent the proper functioning of the respiratory system.
It’s a substance that is banned in the European Union, with more restrictive policies than the American ones, which has historically been used in skin products and cosmetics.
In the United States it is prohibited to use it for inhalation, so that electronic cigarettes sold on the legal market, theoretically, should not carry this compound.
However, researchers have found its presence in almost all samples containing cannabis, so they believe that vitamin E acetate could be included in cannabis oils sold illegally.
The CDC advises users not to use electronic cigarette products containing THC, particularly those from 'informal sources' such as friends, family members or online distributors.