One local teenager is hospitalized after suffering lung damage due to vaping.
So far, there have been seven deaths in the country due to vaping.
Now, one local 19-year-old who recently graduated from Iroquois High School has spent the last four days in the intensive care unit.
Like most, Anthony Mayo had aspirations for his future. He had hopes of being in the military. However, he got into the habit of vaping, which has now left his future uncertain.
“He might have scarred lungs. He might not be able to join the military now. He might not be able to do this. We don’t know what is going to happen to him,” said Keith Mayo, Anthony’s father.
According to his parents, when they originally took him to the emergency room he was diagnosed with bronchitis.
“About a third of patients are having this sort of vaping induced Pneumonitis are getting sent home. Then, they come back five days later so much more sick,” said Anand Popuri, DO, Pulmonologist, LECOM.
Anthony’s father explained they returned to the hospital once his symptoms got worse. They then found out that Anthony’s left lung was 80 percent congested. His right lung was 50 percent congested and his oxygen level was 37. A pulmonary specialist came in, who told them he had seen dead people with a higher oxygen level.
“I was in denial myself. I would see different reports about somebody here getting sick or somebody there, and again it just didn’t seem like something that was really going to happen until we were here,” said Tanya Mayo, Anthony’s mother.
As stories like Anthony’s are starting to come out across the country, one local doctor further explained this is something they are still learning about as well.
“We do know that it may be some of the components of certain e-vaporized cigarettes, but we don’t know specifically what ingredients are causing it. So, I think its a bit of a scary time right now that we’re facing something that we just don’t know enough about,” said Pulmonologist Popuri.
It is unknown how long Anthony will remain in the ICU. For more information on e-cigarettes you can visit https://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/basic_information/e-cigarettes/Quick-Facts-on-the-Risks-of-E-cigarettes-for-Kids-Teens-and-Young-Adults.html.