As of December 27th, the CDC says 2,561 cases of lung injuries linked to e-cigarettes or vaping products have been reported.
At least 55 deaths have been confirmed in 27 states.
Today, News 25’s Kristen Anzuini spoke to one Biloxi man who almost died due to vaping.
Just last month, 21-year-old Daulton Hendry from Biloxi was in a hospital bed fighting for his life. His family was unsure if he would make it. “I was perfectly fine one day, the next on life support, it can happen fast.”
Daulton was near death from a vaping related lung injury. He says that he vaped at least one full JUUL cartridge each day, a habit he started around four years ago. “You don’t see them advertise cancer on them as much as they say on tobacco cans, tobacco in general. Vaping tasted way better too.”
Daulton was in a Mobile, Alabama hospital for 37 days. He spent many of those days on life support, unable to breathe for himself. His family says those days were the worst of their lives. Hope Tinsman, Daulton’s mother, said “And I have never prayed over someone as hard as I did that night. I was a basket case like hysterical. I just prayed and prayed and said Lord please don’t take him from me.”
Now, Daulton is left with only one and a half lungs and a limited ability to perform everyday tasks. He still has to take numerous medications daily through the PICC line in his arm. He also has to do exercises to strengthen what is left of his lungs. “It was eating holes away. So they had to actually go in and pry ribs apart, so they could reach inside of my chest cavity and actually cut out not just the whole right upper lobe but a little bit into my middle lobe as well. So your right upper lobe is about 60-65 percent of your whole right lung so i probably have right under 50 percent of a right lung.”
Daulton hopes his near death experience will inspire other young people to stop vaping. “Life has definitely changed. It’s a big difference how much I have changed, physically looking. I definitely have a bigger and better outlook on life for sure.”