The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services issued updated guidance to health departments and providers on Friday, advising people to refrain from smoking vapes containing THC, a psychoactive component of marijuana, and consider refraining from vaping nicotine, as well.
The guidance came after new recommendations from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
This is the health advisory the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services is sharing with health departments and health care providers across the state:
- CDC and MDHHS recommend that persons should not use e-cigarette or vaping products that contain tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).
- At present, CDC and MDHHS recommend individuals consider refraining from using e-cigarette or vaping products that contain nicotine.
- E-cigarette and/or vaping products should never be used by youths, young adults or women who are pregnant.
- Individuals who do not currently use tobacco products should not start using e-cigarette or vaping products.
- Individuals should not buy any type of e-cigarette or vaping products, particularly those containing THC, off the street.
- Individuals should not modify or add any substances to e-cigarette or vaping products that are not intended by the manufacturer, including products purchased through retail establishments.
- Adults who are vaping should not smoke combustible cigarettes as a replacement for nicotine. E-cigarettes are not FDA approved as a smoking cessation device. Free help is available for individuals who are interested in quitting tobacco at 800-QUIT-NOW (800-784-8669).
The guidance comes after Michigan announced the state’s first death from vaping-related lung injury last week. The state has not released details about the person who died, other than to say he was an adult male, citing privacy concerns. The state also has not said what vaping device or material led to lung injury in that case.
Michigan’s death is one of 26 that have occurred nationally, according to the CDC. The CDC has also tracked 1,299 cases of vaping-related lung injury. Federal data suggests THC plays a role in the outbreak.
In Michigan, 35 cases of vaping-related lung injury have been reported since August, according to the MDHHS. Of those, 26 individuals were interviewed and 80 percent reported vaping with THC-containing products.
“Unfortunately, MDHHS is not seeing a decrease in the number of cases being reported,” noted a press release from the department.
Michigan’s vaping-related lung injury cases have all been in the lower peninsula and have been to people ranging from 16 to 67 years old.
Before the vaping-related lung injury death, Michigan recently moved to ban flavored nicotine vapes, saying they appealed to children and barring retailers from selling them.