According to the American Cancer Society, the long-term effects of vaping are yet to be determined. However, the vapor from e-cigarettes do contain chemicals that cause cancer. The logic follows that you can get cancer from vaping based on the harm done to your lungs by the carcinogenic substances contained in the vapor and flavorants.
The Facts About E-Cigarette Vapor
Many people incorrectly assume that the vapor from an e-cigarette is nothing more than water vapor—and therefore, harmless. The truth is that when you inhale and exhale aerosol while vaping, you breathe in and breathe out a variety of substances that can harm you.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) list the following ingredients found in e-cigarette vapor:
- Carcinogenic (cancer-causing) chemicals
- Diacetyl and other flavorings that have been connected to serious lung disease
- Lead, tin, nickel, and other heavy metals
- Volatile organic compounds
People who vape remain largely in the dark about these dangerous ingredients, and by ingesting them, they endanger not only themselves but also people who may be standing nearby.
The Problem with Flavorants
Another dangerous assumption among many vaping consumers—especially the younger markets that companies like JUUL have allegedly targeted—is that the fun, appealing flavors are safe. Nothing could be further from the truth.
For starters, the flavors attract young people with their candy-like appeal. Ultimately, they open the door to a young population who would not otherwise expose themselves to a nicotine habit.
Besides jumpstarting a lifetime of nicotine addiction, the flavorings in these e-cigarettes are made from substances that are safe for ingestion, but not for heating and inhaling, according to the Mayo Clinic. The heating process changes the chemical composition of these substances, resulting in chemicals that are harmful to the lungs.
Known Dangers and Risks of Vaping
Responding to a marked increase in vaping-related deaths and illnesses, a growing number of cities and states across the United States have banned or have announced plans to ban vaping, as per The New York Times’ Vaping Illness Tracker.
The following conditions are known risks associated with vaping:
- Severe lung damage
- Increased cancer risk
- Addiction to nicotine
- Respiratory problems
- Greater number of asthma attacks
- Heightened symptoms of asthma
- Chronic bronchitis
- Can damage brain development in adolescents
- Negative effects on metabolism
- Increased blood pressure
- Exposure to toxic chemicals
- Increased heart rate
- Nicotine-induced behavioral changes
- Sudden infant death syndrome from vaping while pregnant
- Exposure to aerosol flavorants and solvents
- Possibility of death if refill cartridge contents are consumed
- Harmful aerosol exposure
- Alteration of the brain’s reward system, thereby heightening the chance of addiction
- Increases intensity of high with illicit drugs
- Exposure to dangerous substances in vaporizing mechanism
- Gateway to cigarettes and other tobacco products
- Exposure to volatile organic compounds
- Explosive batteries can cause fires
Unfortunately, many consumers are not aware of the extent to which vaping can harm their bodies.
Vaping Safety Is Often Misrepresented
The largest manufacturer of e-cigarettes, JUUL Labs, Inc., markets its products as a safer alternative to smoking traditional cigarettes. With this pointed messaging, JUUL managed to corner a market that was already saturated.
The dark truth is that these claims have yet to be substantiated. Alternately, the chemical flavorings that JUUL uses to entice an alarmingly young consumer have been found to cause more harm to human lungs than traditional cigarettes do.
JUUL had to answer the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for these deceptive marketing tactics. And in November of 2019, a lawsuit was filed against the e-cigarette manufacturer by the New York Attorney General, who cited the company’s deceptive marketing, targeting of minors, and misleading safety claims.
Lawsuits Against JUUL
While JUUL agreed to halt some of its marketing practices and has cut the use of many of its youth-enticing flavored products, for many consumers, these corrective actions come too little too late.
The New York Times reported 54 vaping-connected deaths as of December 23, 2019. Thousands of more vaping consumers have suffered severe lung problems from their e-cigarette habits—their illnesses being serious enough to land them in the hospital.
Lawsuits against JUUL and other e-cigarette manufacturers have started picking up steam as consumer awareness of the dangers of vaping increases. Some of the types of lawsuits include those from plaintiffs who never used to smoke, but who started vaping after buying into the safer than cigarettes hype. Teens have also emerged in the courtroom scene, with plaintiffs who want to hold the companies liable for luring them into developing a nicotine habit—with no disclosure of the harm to which they were exposing users.
Legal Basis for Lawsuits
Plaintiffs in lawsuits against JUUL are establishing the company’s negligence and failure to warn consumers about the risks of using their e-cigarettes. JUUL also faces scrutiny for possible violation of consumer fraud laws, based on their unfounded safety claims regarding their vaping products.
It Is Possible You Can Get Cancer from Vaping
If you or a loved one developed cancer or another serious illness because of vaping—or if vaping caused you to become addicted to nicotine, you may be eligible to receive compensation from the e-cigarette manufacturer.
Call Gacovino & Lake at (631) 600-0000 for a free case review.