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Health Highlights: Oct. 1, 2019


Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:

Nebraska Sees First Vaping-Related Death, Bringing U.S. Total to 15

A 65 year-old Nebraska man has died due to vaping-linked lung illness, marking the first such fatality for the state and bringing the total number of deaths across the U.S. to 15.

Overall, more than 800 people have so far been seriously sickened after using e-cigarettes, NBC News reported

Last Thursday, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported 12 deaths from vaping had been confirmed, but since then three more deaths have occurred, in Oregon, North Carolina and now Nebraska.

All patients with the disease reported a history of vaping THC, nicotine or something else. Many had symptoms that resemble pneumonia with coughing, trouble breathing, chest pain, extreme fatigue, vomiting and diarrhea, NBC News reports.

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Juul Halts Funding For San Francisco Vaping Ballot Initiative

On Monday, San Francisco-based Juul Labs Inc. said it will no longer fund an effort to quash an anti-vaping law in the city, effectively ending the campaign.

Juul, the largest maker of e-cigarettes, is ending support for the measure after giving nearly $19 million, according to the Associated Press.

Juul's decision follows closely on major changes at the company, including replacing its CEO.

The proposition, however, will still be on the ballot in November.

The law, called proposition C, would permit the sale of vaping products to adults. If it passes, it would override a law passed in June banning the sale of any e-cigarette that has not been reviewed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

"This could very well be yet another of a series of lies and exaggerations from Juul and Big Tobacco," Larry Tramutola, who directs the No on Prop C campaign said in a statement.

"Until they return the $7 million unspent dollars that is in their political account, until they suspend their mail, their advertising, their paid phone calls and lay off their consultants, we do not believe them," he said.

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North Carolina Legionnaires' Case Count Climbs to 79

Confirmed cases of Legionnaires' disease linked to a North Carolina state fair now stand at 79, including 55 people hospitalized and one death.

Health officials haven't found the cause of the outbreak. Many of those sickened, however, said they went to the N.C. Mountain State Fair in Fletcher near Asheville. CNN reported.

One possible cause being investigated is the possibility that people breathed in infected airborne droplets from water rides at the fair, a N.C. health official told CNN.

Also, four cases of Pontiac fever, a less severe flu-like condition, have been reported.

Health officials are asking anyone who went to the fair and is experiencing cough, fever or shortness of breath, to call their doctor to talk about Legionnaire's disease.

Legionnaires' disease is a lung infection caused by breathing in the Legionella bacteria. The condition but is treatable with antibiotics, yet about 10% of patients die, according to CNN.

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