New lung injury called EVALI threatens teenagers health


AUGUSTA,Ga. (WJBF)- Augusta University is a smoke free campus and with the new “Tobacco 21” law faculty members are urging their students to put down the “cancer sticks” before it’s to late.

NewsChannel 6’s Ashley Flete spoke to a doctor with the Georgia Cancer Center who talks about how the vitamins in E-cigarettes are detrimental.

“When you think about electronic cigarettes users, they are in for a double whammy. They have all the effects of a traditional cigarette. Now the problem with this electronic cigarette is that it’s all mixed up. The vapor they are inhaling is creating a new type of lung injury that really has just been discovered,” says Dr. Martha Tingen.

That new discovery now known as EVALI which stands for e-cigarette or vaping product use-associated lung injury.

Dr. Martha Tingen with Cancer Prevention and Control describes what happens to your body after smoking an e-cigarette.

“The vitamin in these electronic cigarettes combined with THC. That combination is a major irritant to the lining of the lungs.”

The CDC reported that as of December 2019 38% of the patients hospitalized for EVALI were between the ages of 18 to 24. Nearly 50 cases were reported for the state of Georgia and South Carolina. Dr. Tigen says there’s some good news for teens who smoked cigarettes and stop at an early age.

“For someone who has smoked for a very long time, which in this case I’m really focusing on the adolescent and young adults. Those changes can actually be reversed, your body can heal itself.”

Within two weeks of quitting, your bones are stronger, your lung function is improved, and your heart attack risk has already started to drop.

If any faculty members or students at Augusta University are found smoking on campus they could face disciplinary actions.

Photographer: Gary Hipps

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