The decision was taken due to “uncertainty” with regards to e-cig regulations across the US, said the retailer. “Given the growing federal, state and local regulatory complexity and uncertainty regarding e-cigarettes, we plan to discontinue the sale of electronic nicotine delivery products at all Walmart and Sam’s Club US locations,” Walmart said. “We will complete our exit after selling through current inventory.”

In response to the cases of vape-related lung disease outbreak across several US states, last week the Trump Administration announced plans to implement a nationwide ban on flavoured e-liquids.

“The Trump Administration is making it clear that we intend to clear the market of flavored e-cigarettes to reverse the deeply concerning epidemic of youth e-cigarette use that is impacting children, families, schools and communities,” said Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar. Meanwhile the states of New York and Michigan, have already implemented such bans.

Vape-related lung disease linked to unlicensed THC

On the other hand, confirming previous reports, a new study published in The New England Journal of Medicine, has indicated that the vast majority of patients suffering from the vape-related lung disease that has made its way across the US, had used unlicensed THC products.

“The most common THC product that was reported was marketed under the ‘Dank Vape’ label (reported by 24 of 41 interviewed patients [59%]). Patients reported use of a number of different e-cigarette devices to aerosolize these products.”

The study looked into 53 cases by patients in Illinois and Wisconsin, who had vaped within 90 days of their symptoms, typically within the previous week. Most of these patients, 84%, admitted to vaping illegally purchased cannabis products. “The most common THC product that was reported was marketed under the ‘Dank Vape’ label (reported by 24 of 41 interviewed patients [59%]).”

“Patients reported using 14 distinct brands of THC products and 13 brands of nicotine products in a wide range of flavors,” said the researchers. “The most common THC product that was reported was marketed under the ‘Dank Vape’ label (reported by 24 of 41 interviewed patients [59%]). Patients reported use of a number of different e-cigarette devices to aerosolize these products.”

The study authors added that while the other 16% claimed to use only nicotine, it is highly likely that they may have been reluctant to admit using illegal drugs. Additionally, it is also unclear whether any of them were using regular e-cigarettes. “Information on product use is based on reports by the patients, and patients may be reluctant to report illicit drug use.”

US health authorities finally urging the public to stay away from unregulated products

As of now, over 450 cases of the lung condition have been reported. After urging vapers to just stop using e-cigarettes for weeks, the CDC, FDA, and HHS, are finally advising consumers to avoid using unlicensed products and refrain from purchasing e-liquids off the street where they are untested, unregulated and therefore possibly unsafe.

Read Further: BBC

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