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Third vaping death in Louisiana has been reported in Lafayette

Posted at 5:15 PM, Jan 27, 2020

LAFAYETTE, La. — BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Louisiana has reported its third vaping death. It's the state's first death this year linked to e-cigarettes.

The state Department of Health reported the first two deaths a week apart in November.

The most recent death was of a person from Lafayette Parish, department spokeswoman Kelly Zimmerman said. She said she doesn't know the person's sex.

As of Friday, 35 people in Louisiana, including those who died, have had lung problems from vaping, according to the most recent online report. The total is three more than in late November.

Patients have ranged from 17 to 71 years old. An update made Tuesday in response to a query by The Associated Press said 24 patients were men and 11 were women, and their average age was 30.

At least 2,711 people nationwide have been hospitalized for vaping-related illness and 60 of them had died as of Jan. 21, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

A thickening agent called vitamin E acetate has been strongly linked to the outbreak, the CDC has said. The chemical is an additive in some e-cigarettes containing THC, the chemical that causes marijuana's high.