A vaping addict, from Utah, is now relying on an oxygen tank after constantly smoking the e-cigarettes.
Aubree Butterfield shared her tragic story on Facebook about how she contracted pneumonia after "constantly" puffing on her e-cig for three years until a month ago when she began vomiting and coughing up blood.
Doctors found vegetable glycerine, an ingredient commonly found in vape juice, had smothered the 25-year-old's lungs, and diagnosed her with lipoid pneumonia.
Although the nursing assistant has never smoked a cigarette before, she is unable to breathe on her own, depending on an oxygen tank for the next several months of her recovery.
"I was constantly throwing up. I had really bad joint pain and terrible headaches. I didn't have any energy," Butterfield shared on Facebook.
"I felt like I couldn't breathe like I wasn't getting enough air in my lungs."
When Butterfield first got hooked on nicotine e-cigarettes three years ago, she constantly puffed on the e-cig as that is what her roommates at university would do.
"I thought it looked cool," she added. "It helped my anxiety but towards the end, it made my anxiety worse."
Butterfield was admitted to Ogden Regional Medical Center, in Utah, on July 11 where X-rays revealed a virus. She was then transferred to Brigham City Community Hospital where further testing revealed the rare pneumonia she had contracted.
Doctors shared with the young nurse that her heart was severely inflamed and feared that she was on the verge of a heart attack, she claims. Once they realised the severity of her condition she was rushed via air ambulance to specialists at the University of Utah Hospital.
"They did another chest X-ray and at that point, they asked me: Did you ever smoke? Did you ever vape?" Butterfield shared.
"They told me that they had found vape oil in the fluid they had pulled out of my lungs."
"They explained that I had lipoid pneumonia and it was caused by vaping."
Sean Maddock, of the University of Utah Hospital's Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine program, revealed that patients suffering vaping-related illnesses were on the rise.
"Our big concern is that we just don't have a good sense of what exactly in these vaping products are causing these illnesses," he said.
"All these cases had oil breakdown and tissue."
"We presume based on everything else that was most likely caused by the vaping."
Butterfield expects to be hooked on to an oxygen tank until at least October. "I've given up vaping but I crave it like crazy," she revealed. "Every time I see someone vape it makes me want to do it."
US health authorities have launched an investigation into the epidemic of mysterious lung illnesses linked to e-cigarette use.
The investigation has stemmed from more than 150 people in at least 16 states in the US being hospitalised in recent weeks, the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention has said.