JUUL Lung Injury

Vaping Causes Lung Damage

Vaping causes lung inflammation, and multiple research articles and studies have shown that vaping increases inflammation in lung tissue.

Lung inflammation can be studied by testing the amount of bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF), Muc5ac production, lung oxidative stress markers and airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR).  The mouse study evaluated each of these in the mice and the results showed vaping was associated with increased lung and cell inflammation. The study found mice who vaped had increased levels of each of these lung damage markers:

  • BALF: Used to evaluate toxic induced alterations and cellular damage in lungs
  • Muc5ac: Measure of mucus hypersecretion in the lungs that is linked to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Oxidative Stress: Lung oxidative stress that is linked to cancer, COPD and asthma in humans and animals.
  • AHR: Used to measure how easily bronchospasms are triggered. The hallmark condition associated with asthma, also occurs with COPD.

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JUULing and Popcorn Lung

JUULing or vaping can also lead to other conditions.  If the e-juice contains diacetyl, use can lead to a permanent lung injury called Bronchiolitis Obliterans, also know as popcorn lung.

Numerous studies have found a strong link between the inhalation of diacetyl and the development of Bronchiolitis Obliterans. For example, one study found that exposure to diacetyl led to significant damage to the epithelium, the thinnest outer layer of tissue lining the bronchioles. The study also indicated that diacetyl can be the cause of peribronchial lymphocytic inflammation, or fibrohistiocytic lesions in the terminal bronchioles.[1] In other words, the exposure of diacetyl to mice was linked to injuries that mimic human Bronchiolitis Obliterans. A further study indicated that diacetyl can reach much deeper into human lungs than into rat lungs, exposing humans to a great risk of injury.[2]

Diacetyl has been discovered in “diacetyl free” e-juice, showing that what is in the chemical mix does not always match what vape companies are advertising. Additional irritants and carcinogens are being found in e-juices after being stored on shelves from chemical interactions, and more dangerous chemicals form when the e-juice is heated and inhaled.


[1] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18227102

[2] https://www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/flavorings/exposure.html

Does JUULing cause Pneumonia?

Pneumonia is an infection in the lungs. Recent studies have indicated that vaping may not only mimic cigarettes in causing pneumonia and 10,000 additional deaths per year in the United States from pneumonia, but may cause it at much greater rates than smoking traditional cigarettes.

With some studies already showing vaping causes high levels of initial infection from rhinovirus, even higher than cigarette smoke, new studies are adding to this by testing vaping smoke against cigarette smoke at immune suppression.

Researchers set out to determine whether the same effects could be seen in human e-cigarette users and published their findings in the American Journal of Physiology – Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology.  The study involved 39 healthy subjects between the ages of 18-50, with about equal number of non-smokers, e-cigarette/vape smokers, and cigarette smokers.  The e-cigarette industry markets e-cigarettes as “less harmful” than conventional cigarettes.  The researchers in this study, however, found that e-cigarette use results in suppression of immune and inflammatory-response genes similar to cigarette smoke.  In fact, vaping e-cigarettes was associated with suppression of 358 genes compared to 53 in cigarette smokers. These genes play important roles in the body’s immune system and defense responses against fungal, bacterial and viral infections.  The suppression of these genes, seven times as many in e-cigarette vape smoke vs traditional cigarettes, leads additional evidence to the fear pneumonia and lung infections may occur more often in vapers than smoker

All 53 of the genes suppressed by cigarette smoke were suppressed by vaping.  That means vaping suppressed the same 53 genes plus an additional 305 more, an increase of 600%. Vaping suppressed seven time as many genes as cigarette smoke

James S. Braaten

James S. Braaten

Product Liability & Toxic Tort Attorney

JUUL Lung Injury Attorney

James Braaten, Esq. is Of Counsel to Clark & DiStefano, and a Senior Litigation Counsel for the firm.  Mr. Braaten has over 25+ years of experience in litigating Products Liability, Mass Torts and Toxic Torts.  Mr. Braaten has a unique background.  He started his career in 1994 as a defense litigator in Products Liability, Mass Torts and Toxic Torts. For over 18 years, he was the National Coordinating Counsel (“NCC”), Regional Counsel and Trial Counsel in mass torts and complex products liability matters for a number of Fortune 500 companies.

If you or a loved one was injured after vaping or juuling, contact the JUUL lawyers at Clark & DiStefano today. You can reach us at 1-609-719-1901, jbraaten@braatenllc.com, or through this page. We offer free consultations and only charge a fee if there is a recovery.

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