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JUUL® Lawsuits

Different e-cigarette electronic nicotine delivery systems.

Use of e-cigarettes has been linked to serious lung and neurological health issues, including:

  • Seizures
  • Pulmonary (lung) disease
  • Respiratory failure
  • Hemorrhagic stroke (intracerebral hemorrhage)
  • Death due to any of events described above

Have you or a loved one vaped e-cigarettes and experienced severe lung or neurological issues? If so, you may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, and emotional damages.

Trustwell Law is accepting e-cigarette lawsuits on behalf of those who have endured seizures, strokes, serious lung problems, or even death. Contact us for a free consultation. Our experienced attorneys take a personalized, compassionate approach. We cut through the legalese and partner with our clients. We also have access to the expertise, resources, and manpower to fully investigate each case and fight for and with our clients to get the justice they deserve.

You pay nothing unless we win your case. Call us at 202-914-1454 or submit your case details online and someone will contact you shortly.

Different e-cigarette electronic nicotine delivery systems.

E-Cigarettes and Lung Problems

All across America, adults and teens who vape have been and are being hospitalized with acute breathing issues, and some have died. In some cases, they are suffering from yet unnamed lung ailments, with the common trait being severe respiratory distress.

Some e-cigarette users assume the FDA regulates and has tested these products, but that has not been the case. The FDA has not tested them. In fact, there are ingredients used in e-cigarette mixtures that are not allowed to be added to traditional cigarettes, which the FDA does regulate.

Independent labs have started testing the liquid in e-cigarettes, and some of the results are alarming. Researchers at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health tested JUUL pods and found glucan, a dangerous microbial toxin, in about half of the pods they tested. Glucan can harm the airways and lead to long-term lung damage. And the two flavors still allowed in pods—nicotine and menthol—were far more contaminated than the other, now-banned in premade pods, flavors.

Researchers at Yale University designed a machine to capture and analyze the vapor produced by JUUL e-cigarettes. They found that the chemicals in the aerosol (vapor) they analyzed were not just those listed on the label. They found that new chemicals formed when those in the vape juice were aerosolized to create the vapor, and that those new, unexpected chemicals could irritate users’ airways along with the listed chemicals and ingredients. Lead author of the study, Hanno Erythropel, said, “People often assume that these e-liquids are a final product once they are mixed, but the reactions create new molecules in the e-liquids…”

Up until all but nicotine and menthol flavorings were banned for use in premade e-cigarette pods in early 2020, the flavorings used in e-cigarette pods may have posed health risks. (Flavorings are still not banned in disposable e-cigs.) The Surgeon General’s report cautions that the ingredients in flavors were evaluated for ingestion, not inhalation. In addition, many flavoring compounds were not even identified on e-cigarette packaging. The report further states that many of these flavorings have already been found to cause adverse health effects when inhaled.

One disease that has been identified in some e-cigarette users is bronchiolitis obliterans organizing pneumonia (BOOP), which may also be referred to as cryptogenic organizing pneumonia (COP). It is a rare lung disease characterized by inflammation that exhibits swirls of fibrous tissue filling the bronchioles and alveoli in the lungs. There are at least two published case studies of e-cigarette users who contracted BOOP. Both these individuals required hospitalization and mechanical ventilation.

However, the symptoms of bronchiolitis obliterans organizing pneumonia are similar to all the symptoms experienced by e-cigarette users who have been hospitalized. They include:

  • Severe respiratory distress
  • Crackling sound in the lungs (crackles)
  • Rattling sound in the lungs (rales)
  • Shortness of breath
  • Cough
  • Flu-like illness

E-Cigarettes and Increased Risk of Seizures

In April 2019 the FDA released a statement warning to the public that 35 cases of seizures in e-cigarette users had been reported to poison control centers over nine years—most involving younger users. The agency deemed the data enough to warrant further investigation, also noting that since reporting is voluntary, there may have been more instances of seizures among vapers than were known.

The FDA therefore requested that health-care providers and consumers report instances of seizures experienced by e-cigarette users on the FDA’s Safety Reporting Portal (SRP) for Tobacco Products.

Symptoms of seizures may include:

  • Body stiffening and shaking
  • Muscle spasms
  • Uncontrollable jerking of arms and legs
  • Loss of consciousness or awareness
  • Confusion
  • Staring spells
  • Loss of bladder or bowel control

Some of the seizures described in the FDA report were grand mal seizures, which are dramatic to experience or observe and therefore easily identifiable as seizures. But there are other, milder types of seizures that may not be recognized for what they are and therefore may go unreported.

Studies have shown that nicotine, from any source, can increase the risk of seizures. While e-cigarette labels may list nicotine content, many have been found to be inaccurate. Some are off by over 10 percent, and at least one was found to have 172 percent more nicotine than was listed on the label. In addition, at least one study, conducted at the University of California, San Francisco, found that JUUL products deliver significantly more nicotine to the bloodstream per puff than other e-cigarettes and traditional cigarettes.

E-Cigarettes and Hemorrhagic Stroke

A 2017 study by the European Lung Foundation found that e-cigarettes caused stiffening of the arteries in humans as well as increased blood pressure and heart rate. Arterial stiffness has a correlation with increased risk of strokes and heart attacks later in life. The study involved healthy young adult volunteers and noted their heart rate and blood pressure after 30 minutes of vaping. Both were found to be elevated. And their arterial stiffness was three times higher than the nicotine-free group.

Diagram showing hemorrhagic stroke.

Symptoms of stroke include:

  • Sudden confusion
  • Sudden trouble speaking
  • A severe headache that comes on suddenly and intensely
  • Sudden vision problems in one eye or both eyes
  • Sudden dizziness or loss of balance or coordination
  • Sudden trouble walking
  • Sudden numbness or weakness in your face or arms or legs, especially on one side of the body

The most efficient way to identify a stroke is by using the National Stroke Association’s “FAST” acronym:

  • Face: does one side of your face droop when you smile?
  • Arms: when you raise your arms, does one arm drift down?
  • Speech: is your speech odd or slurred?
  • Time: If you experience any of these symptoms, call 911 immediately. It is urgent.
Diagram showing hemorrhagic stroke.

E-Cigarette Safety Claims

In 2019, the FDA contacted at least one e-cigarette manufacturer—Juul, which was also the most popular brand with the largest market share—to warn them that their claim that e-cigarettes are safe may have violated the law, because the FDA never approved such a claim. Furthermore, use of e-cigarettes by teens and young adults has been increasing yearly in the U.S., and e-cigarette companies have been criticized for marketing that had been deemed aimed at youth. Acting FDA Commissioner Ned Sharpless, said, “Juul has ignored the law, and, very concerningly, has made some of these statements in school to our nation’s youth.” The government has since raised the age for purchasing e-cigarettes from 18 to 21 years old.

 

Sources

Have you or a loved one used e-cigarettes and experienced severe health issues such as lung disease or failure, seizures, or stroke?

For a free consultation and to learn more about your legal options, please contact us. We’re here to help.

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