The Department of Health reported today, Thursday, that the first suspected case of lung damage, associated with the use of electronic cigarettes, was recorded on the island.
"As soon as we become aware of this case, we activate the protocol established in the Department of Health and we mobilize to know the details of the clinical picture of the female and identify the treatments that she will require," said Dr. Rafael Rodríguez Mercado, Secretary of Health .
This is a 19-year-old female resident of the town of Bayamón, who spent ten days in intensive care of a hospital institution and, who, after being questioned, revealed that she had been using electronic cigarettes since she was 13 years old.
Rodriguez Mercado indicated that the person underwent specific tests to confirm the diagnosis and determine the severity of lung damage.
“Likewise, we are making efforts to meet any other health need in which we can support it and facilitate its recovery process,” added the headline, who commented that the information was provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC, for its acronym in English).
As indicated, for a case to be suspected of lung damage associated with the use of electronic cigarettes, it is vital to go through a history of uses and symptoms that lead to an emergency room and eventually an intensive one.
"Once the hospital identifies the symptoms, plus the patient has verbalized using the device, and that is a suspicion that it could be a case," the official added.
According to the most recent CDC report, so far, 37 people have died in the United States and a total of 1,888 have been affected by lung injuries related to consumption.
In addition, according to a study by the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System of Puerto Rico, referring to the prevalence of electronic cigarettes on the Island, for 2016 0.7% of adults consumed electronic cigarettes; that is, 19,217. In 2017, the percentage increased to 1.2% (31,663).
“It is very likely that if this study were carried out again, now in 2019, a significant increase in the use of electronic cigarettes will be observed. It has been shown that smoking causes serious damage to health since it is a risk factor for the development of multiple diseases such as asthma, cardiovascular problems and cancer, among many others, ”added Rodríguez Mercado.
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