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King County confirms 7th case of severe lung disease associated with vaping

A King County man is the latest case of severe lung disease associated with vaping in Washington. The CDC is working to pinpoint what could be causing the outbreak.

Editor's note: The above video previously aired on KING 5 in 2019 when the vaping related illness outbreak was just announced. 

SEATTLE, Wash. -- King County health officials announced Friday another patient with severe lung disease associated with vaping. The case brings the total number of patients in King County to seven since September 20 of this year. 

The latest patient is a man in his 20s. The man was hospitalized but is now recovering. Which products he was using to vape is still under investigation, officials said. 

There have been 15 cases of severe lung disease associated with vaping in Washington state since April 2019, and 67% of the patients are male, according to the Washington State Department of Health.

The latest numbers show seven cases in King County, three in Snohomish County, two in Spokane County, one in Pierce County, one in Mason County, and one in Kitsap County. 

RELATED: Apple bans vaping-related apps amid outbreak of vaping illnesses and deaths

In four of the cases, the patients range in age from 10 to 19-years-old. The majority of cases are in people ages 20 to 39-years-old, according to data from the Department of Health. 

Some patients recorded by the Department of Health reported using THC only products, while others used Nicotine only products. Some patients recorded using both. 

It's still unclear what exactly is causing patients using vaping products to come down with severe lung complications, however, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has made some leeway. 

The CDC announced earlier this week its identified vitamin E acetate as a chemical of concern among people with e-cigarette or vaping use. 

The CDC tested samples from 29 patients from 10 states exhibiting symptoms of lung injury and found vitamin E acetate in all of the samples. Vitamin E acetate might be used as a thickening agent in THC-containing e-cigarette or vaping products, according to the CDC. 

However, scientists said although vitamin E acetate was found in all the samples, they're still not able to rule out the contribution of other chemicals of concern. 

There are currently 2,172 people across the nation who have reported lung injuries associated with vape product use, including 42 deaths, according to the latest numbers from the CDC. 

RELATED: CDC confirms vitamin E acetate possibly linked to vaping illness outbreak

The Washington State Board of Health approved Governor Jay Inslee's emergency ban issued in September on vapor products and certain vape flavors, including flavored THC vapor products. 

The order also asked the state's Liquor and Cannabis Board to ban any ingredients that are found to be the cause of reported lung illnesses related to vaping in the state and across the country.  

The ban is in effect through February 7, 2020.

The Washington State Department of Health recommends people to not smoke or vape until the cause of the lung illness is confirmed. Health officials said if you do continue to use e-cigarettes or vapor products, then monitor your symptoms and seek medical attention right away if you have any concerns. 

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