ASH Daily News for 9 December 2019


  • ‘Dank Vapes’ may be driving the US lung illness epidemic
  • Plain tobacco packing hits shelves in Turkey to curb smoking
  • US: Infant morbidity decreases with incentive-based prenatal tobacco interventions


‘Dank Vapes’ may be driving the US lung illness epidemic

More than half of US vapers with life-threatening lung illnesses used black market THC e-cigarettes sold in packaging branded ‘Dank Vapes,’ the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officials said Friday (6 December).

Health officials have suspected that bootleg THC vaping products may be to blame for the epidemic of 2,291 illnesses across the US. Of those hospitalised for vaping lung illnesses, 56% said they had used Dank Vapes. The next most commonly reported brands were TKO (used by 15% of victims), Smart Cart (13%) and Rove (12%).

Investigations and busts of vape shops have uncovered packaging branded as Dank Vapes, which is sold on its own, to use with any counterfeit products. For months, the CDC has warned against buying bootleg or counterfeit vaping products – particularly those that use THC, the psychoactive component of marijuana. THC vapes have been linked to 80% of lung illnesses that have swept the US, CDC officials said Friday.

The chemical vitamin E acetate has been found in many samples of vapes used by people with vaping-related lung injury. While vitamin E acetate is perfectly safe to use on the skin in lotions and creams, it is not considered safe to inhale. It’s described as a very ‘sticky’ substance, which sticks in the lungs and, doctors suspect, triggers devastating inflammation and damage seen in patients fighting for their lives after vaping.

Both THC and vitamins are banned from UK regulated e-cigarettes and e-liquids

Source: Daily Mail, 6 December 2019

See also:
CDC: Outbreak of Lung Injury Associated with the Use of E-Cigarette, or Vaping, Products

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Plain tobacco packing hits shelves in Turkey to curb smoking

Turkey has become the seventh country to introduce standardised packaging for tobacco products, after France, the UK, Ireland, Norway, Canada and Australia. A World Health Organization (WHO) report said that more than 8 million people lose their lives every year because of smoking-related diseases.

The new packages will have one colour with a standard font for brand names and other necessary information, but no logo or other distinctive marks. Picture warnings, including 14 new warning labels, will cover 85% of the packages, which will feature the 171 hotline to help people stop smoking.

Yüksel Denli, the head of the Tobacco and Alcohol Department at the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, said that the new regulation is intended to eliminate the attractiveness of tobacco products and boost deterrent effects of packages by increasing visual health warnings. “The cigarette sales sections in the markets have a combination of appealing elements that encourage, especially young people, to use them, said Denli. “With plain and standard packages, we aim to eliminate their attractiveness.”

Source: Hurriyet Daily News, 8 December 2019

See also:
WHO: WHO report on the global tobacco epidemic, 2019

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US: Infant morbidity decreases with incentive-based prenatal tobacco interventions

Colorado is taking a critical step to protect low-income women during their pregnancy through incentive-based smoking cessation intervention. A new study from the Colorado School of Public Health at the Anschutz Medical Campus shows a significant reduction in infant morbidity due to the programme.

The study, published in Public Health Nursing, examines the results of the interventions provided by the Baby & Me Tobacco Free program (BMTF) throughout Colorado.

In Colorado, smoking in the third trimester of pregnancy is three to four times higher among women who live in poverty relative to women with higher incomes, according to Colorado Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System 2012-2014. Smoking during pregnancy is the most substantial modifiable risk factor for infant morbidity and mortality in the United States.

The BMTF intervention includes counselling (based on motivational interviewing) provided throughout the pregnancy and postpartum period, carbon-monoxide breath testing and financial incentives in the form of diaper vouchers contingent on cessation-status.
The intervention resulted in reductions in infant morbidity, significant cost savings and total annual cost savings for Colorado of $4,144,118 and $1,497,299 compared to the birth certificate and Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System (PRAMS) reference populations, respectively.

Source: Medical Xpress, 6 December 2019

See also:
Public Health Nursing: Impact of an incentive‐based prenatal smoking cessation program for low‐income women in Colorado

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