e-cigarettes

Efforts to stem the tide of teen vaping seem to be a step behind the market. By the time Juul pulled most of its flavored pods from the market in October of 2019, many teens had already moved on to an array of newer, disposable vape products.

San Diego's public school schools have filed suit against Juul Labs, Inc., the largest U.S. producer of e-cigarettes, accusing the company of deliberately marketing its vaping products to young people, effectively rolling back years of progress made by anti-smoking campaigns.

Updated 6:14 p.m. ET

The Trump administration announced it will crack down on certain vaping products containing fruit, mint and other e-cigarette flavors to keep them away from kids. Manufacturers will have 30 days to take these products off the market before the Food and Drug Administration can take enforcement action.

For decades, major tobacco companies have fought against raising the age limit to buy their products from 18 to 21. But recently, some cigarette and e-cigarette giants have started lobbying for the minimum age to rise.

"Raising the purchase age to 21 reduces underage access," a radio ad from e-cigarette giant Juul declared. "That's why Juul Labs supports making 21+ the law nationwide."

A health-surveillance system put in place after the terrorist attacks of September 2001 has been used to pinpoint the cause of the vaping-related lung injuries that have killed 54 Americans and sent more than 2,500 people to the hospital.

Using this system, researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have found that the lung injuries rose sharply in June of this year.

The extreme cases of lung injury caused by vaping have raised awareness of the potential harms of electronic cigarettes.

Since the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention began tracking the problem last March, there have been 52 confirmed deaths and about 2,400 hospitalizations.

Jackie Fortier / StateImpact Oklahoma

Some 10.8 million Americans had started vaping as of last year, according to a government study. The surge has been driven to a great degree by the immense success of Juul, by far the most popular vaping product.

As vaping has grown more popular in recent years, the trend has been fueled by the habit's pleasurable allure: Compared with smoking cigarettes or pot, vaping is discreet and less smelly. Vaping fluids come in hundreds of flavors. There's no tar or other byproducts of burning. And vape pens are high-tech, customizable and sleek.

In her office at Boulder High School, the assistant principal has a large cardboard box where she can toss the spoils of her ongoing battle with the newest student addiction.

"This is what I call the box of death," says Kristen Lewis. "This is everything that we've confiscated."

The use and importation of electronic cigarettes will soon be outlawed in the Philippines, according to President Rodrigo Duterte. He criticized vaping devices at a press conference Tuesday, four days after Filipino health regulators saw their first case of vape-associated lung injury.

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