A 19-year-old habitual vaper has opened up about being rushed to an intensive care unit, and nearly dying reportedly due to smoking Juul and other e-cigarettes.
Claire Chung, a college student who lives in Washington, DC, says the habit destroyed her lung tissue and caused her to come down with a 104-degree fever.
She shared her eye-opening story on Instagram on December 29, when she posted a photo of herself lying in a hospital bed connected to an IV drip and medical machines.
"For the past 3 weeks, I had a consistent high fever of 104 with no other symptoms whatsoever," she wrote in the post which has since gone viral.This 17-year-old's lungs failed due to vaping, medics believe:
"From this, we assumed the flu or a cold so after a couple weeks of taking [over-the-counter] meds with nothing helping, I went to get checked out further.
After considerations of malaria, autoimmune disorders, and many many other tests, a chest x-ray showed what they thought was slight pneumonia in the lower area of my left lung.
After being on two antibiotics for 48 hours, the fevers were still spiking to 104, so I went into the ER on Christmas morning."
I was hospitalized and given IV fluids and antibiotics. Between the emergency, infectious disease, and pulmonary departments, they exhausted all tests and options and still nothing was helping.
A CT scan of my lungs was ordered and it revealed extremely disturbing results. ‘Healthy lungs on a scan should be black. My 19-year-old lungs were completely hazy and white in the scans, entirely covering both lungs.
I was taken by ambulance to be admitted into more intensive care. They couldn’t determine whether the scans were showing fluid, blood, bacteria, infection, etc, so they were still unable to actually treat the cause of my symptoms.
After conducting many more tests and a bronchoscopy, it was determined that there was no infection and that my lung tissue was just completely destroyed from using Juuls and vapes and oil cartridges.
Not only is there severe damage in my lungs, but from when I started school to when I graduate, my only break was this month of December. ‘That means if this had happened a couple of weeks earlier or a couple of weeks later, I would not have had access to healthcare and this would never have been caught.
In that case, I would most likely be DEAD within the next month. Please take it from personal experience that this is NOT worth it from something as stupid as a nicotine device. The stories that you’re hearing online are REAL. Death was a VERY real possibility, I am still hospitalized on a laundry list of IV drugs and steroids, I may have permanent scarring in my lungs, and it’s all because of Juuls and carts."
In a follow-up post, Chung shared images of the X-rays and CT scans.
"My bronchial tubes are EXTREMELY inflamed beyond belief and all the white haziness (which should be black and clear on a healthy scan) is damaged tissue,’ she wrote in the post. "When the pulmonologist came to me with the results, he was in complete shock. ‘He genuinely had no reaction other than 'Wow.'"
"This is a lung specialist who looks at diseased scans everyday for a living telling a NINETEEN-year-old girl that he’s never seen anything like this before. ‘Because there is no research on Juuls/carts/vapes, they could see all this damage but could not treat it. The doctors couldn’t tell whether this was blood, fluid, bacteria, a virus, inflammation, etc. I could hear the tension and apprehension in every one of my doctors voices of not knowing whether or not they could help me or if I was going to live or die. ‘The scariest part is that even with the extent of the damage, I never once felt any of it."