U.S. health regulators issued an announcement about a health risk possibly linked to use of e-cigarettes that mostly affects young users.
The Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday said it will investigate a possible link between vaping and seizures after receiving reports of seizures among users of e-cigarettes.
Possible Side Effect Of E-Cigarette Use
Recent studies already showed that e-cigarette use can cause DNA damage and cause cancer. It may also stimulate cardiovascular events especially in individuals who have pre-existing heart conditions. It now appears vaping may also cause seizures in some people.
The FDA said that from 2010 and 2019, it received 35 reports of people who experienced seizures after using e-cigarettes. Most cases involve teens and young adults. Seizures occur as a result of sudden and abnormal electrical activity in the brain.
The agency said that nicotine poisoning can cause seizures or convulsions, but it is yet unclear if use of e-cigarettes caused the seizures in these cases. The agency nonetheless said that the recent spike in reported cases of seizures that occur with e-cigarette use indicate a potential safety issue.
Report Potential Cases Of Seizures Linked To E-cigarettes
It now encourages the public to report cases of individuals who have used e-cigarettes and suffered from seizures through the Safety Reporting Portal (SRP). Relevant medical records in support of these reports may also be submitted instead of a full SRP report.
"The FDA is seeking more information about seizures following e-cigarette use to identify common risk factors and understand if any e-cigarette product attributes such as nicotine content or formulation may contribute to seizures," the FDA said in a statement.
Warning Signs Of Seizures
Seizures are often associated with convulsions, which are characterized by uncontrollable shaking of a person's body. Not all seizures, however, show full body shaking, and the person may or may not fall down.
Most seizures last only a few seconds or minutes, and the person may appear fine, confused, sleepy, and may experience headache afterward. They may not remember what they were doing or what happened right before they had seizures.
Other potential signs of seizures include lapse in consciousness or awareness, which may happen when a person appears to stare blankly into space for a few seconds or suddenly stops moving.
Seizures do not always cause lasting harm, but they require prompt medical attention.