A Pennsylvania teenager is the latest vaper to be left in a medically induced coma after suffering from an unknown lung illness that is likely due to vaping.

Kevin Boclair is currently in hospital connected to a heart/lung machine and may need a lung transplant, local media outlet Fox 29 reports.

The 19-year-old started vaping in high school and told his mother he had quit.

"He did quit but then he went back to it for the flavour, but then he started the nicotine one and he got hooked on that," Kevin's mother Debbie Boclair said.

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Boclair (pictured, right) was transferred to the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, where he was placed in a medically-induced coma and hooked up to a heart-lung machine. Photo / Facebook
Boclair (pictured, right) was transferred to the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, where he was placed in a medically-induced coma and hooked up to a heart-lung machine. Photo / Facebook

Two weeks ago he started coughing so violently that he was vomiting and he looked grey.

His mother rushed him to an urgent care clinic, where doctors did an X-ray and found that he had double pneumonia and his lungs were failing.

The infection causes inflammation in the alveoli - the tiny, elastic air sacs in your lungs - which makes it difficult to breathe.

After the teen was taken to two different hospitals, he ended up at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania ICU unit, where he was placed in a medically induced coma.

Doctors advised his parents they suspected his lung failure was a result of vaping and that he may need a double-lung transplant.

"They know it's vaping," Debbie said.

"This [condition] is even new to the doctors."

While e-cigarettes haven't been linked to pneumonia before, the vapour appears to help bacteria that cause pneumonia to attach to the cells that line the airways, according to a 2018 study in the European Respiratory Journal.

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Earlier this week, a Utah teen shared a warning about e-cigarettes after she placed in a medically induced coma. She and doctors believe the cause of her lung damage is linked to vaping.

Maddie was left unable to breathe on her own after developing lung disease from vaping. Photo / GoFundMe
Maddie was left unable to breathe on her own after developing lung disease from vaping. Photo / GoFundMe

Last week it emerged that the first person had died from vaping after she suffered severe lung illness.

The death appears to be the first among a spate of mysterious lung illnesses now under investigation by US state and federal health officials in connection to vaping.

Public health officials are warning against using e-cigarettes and other vaping products after an increase in mysterious respiratory illnesses that have been linked back to vaping.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued an advisory that "includes the recommendation that while this investigation is ongoing, if you are concerned about these specific health risks, consider refraining from the use of e-cigarette products" following the spike in illnesses.

CDC revealed there are at least 215 possible cases in 22 states of lung disease which may be tied to vaping.

"We have seen over 200 cases of serious lung injury, one death and people on ventilators," Dr Mike Cirigliano explained to Fox 29.

"Anything that is vaporised whether it be smoke, cigarettes, vaping in any way, in my opinion, it is not something you want to be doing," Cirigliano said.

Reports of the number of people hospitalised for vaping-related lung illnesses have doubled in the past week, Illinois officials said in a statement.

At least 22 people, ranging in age from 17 to 38, have experienced respiratory illness after using e-cigarettes or vaping, it said.

E-cigarettes have grown in popularity over the past decade despite little research on their long-term effects. In recent years, health authorities have warned of an epidemic of vaping by teenagers.