Unveiling and Debunking the Reality of Vaping and Popcorn Lung

Individuals contemplating the switch from smoking to vaping frequently encounter mentions of the infamous "popcorn lung." Even if they haven't, it's likely that someone in their circle has stumbled upon a story about it. The reality is that experts assert British vapers are not susceptible to this lung disease.

What exactly is the condition known as Popcorn Lung?
Popcorn lung, also called bronchiolitis obliterans or obliterative bronchiolitis, refers to a condition where the smallest airways in the lungs, the bronchioles, undergo scarring and inflammation, resulting in blockage. This deterioration impairs lung function, making breathing more challenging. Unfortunately, this condition is irreversible, and the sole remedy is a lung transplant.

What leads to the development of Popcorn Lung?
Bronchiolitis obliterans may arise from specific bacterial or viral infections, particular diseases, trauma experienced during a lung or bone marrow transplant, or inhalation of specific chemicals.

What signs indicate the presence of Popcorn Lung?
Initially, Popcorn Lung presents symptoms akin to a common cold, advancing to encompass coughing, shortness of breath, wheezing, and fatigue. Lung function steadily declines, ultimately leading to respiratory failure.

What's the origin behind the term Popcorn Lung?
In 2002, the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention identified eight workers at a popcorn factory in the United States experiencing the disease. Those with the most severe symptoms had been in close contact with a substance known as diacetyl, employed to impart a buttery, creamy flavour to food products.

In what sources can diacetyl be located?
Diacetyl is present in foods that demand dairy or brown flavours (such as toffee and butterscotch) and is also found in cigarette smoke. During the early initial phases of vaping, it was utilized in certain e-liquids, particularly those with custard flavours.

Is diacetyl present in e-liquids?
As per Public Health England's Public Health Matters(1), dispelling the myth, using e-cigarettes does not expose users to the risk of popcorn lung. Diacetyl is prohibited as an ingredient in e-cigarettes and e-liquids in the UK. While trace amounts have been identified in some e-liquid flavourings, they are hundreds of times lower than those found in cigarette smoke. Even at these levels, smoking is not a significant risk factor for popcorn lung.

Does vaping lead to the development of Popcorn Lung
Reports have circulated linking vaping products to a condition known as 'popcorn lung.' This was attributed to a chemical flavouring, diacetyl, which was previously utilized in e-liquids. However, diacetyl is now prohibited in e-liquids in the UK according to the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016. Consequently, all of our British Blissful Co vape juices are UK-regulated vaping products and e-liquids eliminates the risk of 'popcorn lung.

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