Statement from CDC Director Robert R. Redfield, M.D., on Lung Injury and Deaths Associated with E-cigarette or Vaping Products

Media Statement

For Immediate Release: Thursday, September 19, 2019
Contact: Media Relations
(404) 639-3286

Today CDC announced that 530 people have experienced lung injuries associated with the use of e-cigarette or vaping products. CDC has received complete sex and age data on 373 cases. Two thirds (67%) of cases are people 18 to 34 years old, and 16% are younger than 18 years old. Of these, three fourths (72%) of the cases are male.

Any tobacco product use, including e-cigarettes, is unsafe for youth. Nicotine can harm the developing adolescent brain. We must do everything we can to reduce the use of e-cigarettes among middle and high school students to protect them from immediate lung injury and a lifetime of nicotine addiction.

This is a complex investigation that spans many states, involves hundreds of cases, and involves a wide variety of substances and products. What we do know is that all cases have one thing in common: the use of e-cigarettes or vaping devices.  Many of the cases involved people who reported using THC in these devices, either alone or along with nicotine. Some of the cases have reported using only nicotine.

If you are worried about your health, CDC recommends you stop using these products and advises you to consult with your doctor about which FDA-approved nicotine cessation product is right for you.

–Robert R. Redfield, MD, CDC Director


CDC works 24/7 protecting America’s health, safety and security. Whether disease start at home or abroad, are curable or preventable, chronic or acute, or from human activity or deliberate attack, CDC responds to America’s most pressing health threats. CDC is headquartered in Atlanta and has experts located throughout the United States and the world.

Page last reviewed: September 19, 2019