An oil found in illicit vape carts is linked to vaping-related lung illness and weed prohibition is likely the root cause.
Since early August there have been more than 450 cases of severe lung illnesses and as many as five deaths, all attributed to vaping. Investigators at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) found vitamin E acetate in samples collected from patients who became sick in at least 33 states across the U.S.
Vitamin E acetate is found in some cannabis vape cartridge diluents. Diluents are used in vaporizer cartridges to liquefy the cannabis oil so it vaporizes properly.
“We know from earlier testing by New York that they had found vitamin E acetate, but to have the FDA talk about it from their overall testing plan, that was the most remarkable thing that we heard,” an unnamed health official told the Washington Post.
Some of those diluents’ websites have gone offline in the wake of the announcement. Leafly reported that Honey Cut, a “suspicious diluent thickener,” went offline shortly after the announcement was made. Other diluent manufacturers have pulled products that might contain vitamin E acetate.
The FDA told state officials on September 4, 2019 that it’s lab tests found nothing unusual in nicotine vapes collected from sick patients.