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US vaping illnesses rise to 1,888 with pace picking up again

Carla K. Johnson
Associated Press

The number of U.S. vaping illnesses has jumped again, reaching more than 1,800 cases.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said 1,888 confirmed and probable cases have been reported in 49 states. An Illinois report brings the toll to 38 deaths in 24 states.

In this early August 2019 image provided by Intermountain Healthcare, shows an x-ray image of one of the first patients in Utah treated for vaping-related respiratory illness by Dr. Dixie Harris, Intermountain Healthcare pulmonologist. Utah health officials continue to see a steady stream of people suffering from vaping-related lung illnesses as the state's rate of cases is more than six times the national rate.

The total is 284 higher than what the government reported last week and a larger increase than seen in several weeks. Officials say the previous slowdown could have been caused by reporting delays.

The outbreak appears to have started in March. No single ingredient, electronic cigarette or vaping device has been linked to all the illnesses. Most who got sick said they vaped products containing THC, the high-inducing ingredient in marijuana.

Health officials urge people to avoid vaping, particularly products containing THC and purchased off the street.