Out of eight public health regions in Texas, the Centers for Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that the 2/3 Region has the highest number of vaping-associated lung disease cases and the first confirmed death in Texas connected to vaping.
The Texas Department of Health Services public relations director Chris Van Deusen confirmed Wednesday the first death associated with vaping was an older, adult woman in the 2/3 public health region of Texas.
The 2/3 public health region borders Tom Green County and stretches northeast to the Texas-Oklahoma border and includes Ballinger, Abilene, Wichita Falls and the Dallas-Fort Worth-area.
A CDC health advisory Aug. 30 said there was a sharp increase in severe pulmonary illnesses among people who vape.
By the end of September, there were more than 800 vaping-related lung illnesses reported to the CDC.
As of Tuesday, Oct. 8, the Department of State Health Services in Texas identified 95 cases of severe lung-disease related to vaping and were investigating 28 other possible cases.
In the 2/3 Public Health Region there are 48 cases of severe lung disease associated with vaping — the highest in the state.
The second highest number of cases was 21 in the Southeast Texas 6/5S region on the Gulf Coast, which includes Houston.
The CDC recommends people discontinue using vape and electronic-nicotine delivery devices.
There are 18 deaths confirmed in 15 states related to vaping in the U.S.
The CDC reports most, but not all, of the patients were using THC-containing products, about 70 percent were men and about 80 percent were under the age of 35.
It remains unknown if there is a single chemical exposure causing the lung injuries related to e-cigarette use.