Three more Connecticut residents have become ill with lung injuries possibly related to using e-cigarettes or vaping, according to the state Department of Public Health.
Thirty-four cases have been reported to the department since the middle of August. Two patients remain in the hospital.
The 34 cases involve residents from seven Connecticut counties.
Seventeen have been in Fairfield County.
Nine have been in New Haven County, three have been in New London County, two have been in Hartford County, one has been in Litchfield County, one has been in Tolland County and one has been in Windham County.
Five patients have been under 18 years old, nine are between 18 and 24, eight are between 25 and 34 and 12 are 35 years old or up.
According to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a total of 1,479 cases of vaping-related lung injury had been reported from 49 states and 1 U.S. territory as of Oct. 15.
The CDC has reported 33 deaths in 24 states. Connecticut has seen one fatality.
The state Department of Health says the latest national findings suggest that products containing THC – a psychoactive component derived from marijuana – are playing a major role in the outbreak.
Among the patients in Connecticut, 26 patients reported using vaping products containing THC in the 90-days before becoming sick whereas two patients reported exclusive use of nicotine-containing vaping products.
They said the specific types of vaping products used by six patients are still under investigation.
“These vaping-related lung injuries are a national public health crisis,” Department of Public Health Commissioner Renée Coleman-Mitchell said in a statement. “We continue to work with the CDC and other partners to find out the specific root cause of these troubling lung injuries.”
As the investigation continues, Coleman-Mitchell is asking Connecticut residents not to use e-cigarette or vaping products that contain THC.
There is a statewide tobacco use cessation telephone Quit-line for anyone wishing to quit using any tobacco products: 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669).