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Diacetyl Exposure Lawsuit

Some e-cigarettes or ‘vapes’ have been found to contain diacetyl, a flavoring chemical that has been linked to bronchitis obliterans (‘popcorn lung’).

Some e-cigarettes or ‘vapes‘ have been found to contain diacetyl, a flavoring chemical that has been linked to an irreversible lung disease called bronchitis obliterans, also known as ‘popcorn lung’.

The Toxic Tort Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus exclusively on the representation of plaintiffs in diacetyl exposure lawsuits. We are handling individual and group litigation nationwide and currently accepting new cases in all 50 states.

If you were diagnosed with bronchiolitis obliterans (popcorn lung) after using an electronic cigarette or vaping, you should contact us immediately. You may be entitled to compensation and our lawyers can help.

Update: E-Cigs Affect Lungs Immediately, Study Finds

April 26, 2016 – Although e-cigarettes are marketed as a safe alternative to traditional smoking, a new study presented at the 2016 CHEST World Congress has found that the devices have an immediate effect on pulmonary function. For the study, researchers looked at 54 young cigarette and e-cigarettes smokers, 27 of whom had mild controlled asthma. After using e-cigs, airway obstruction and inflammation measurements were worse in both groups, but were more severe in asthmatics.

Some E-Cigarette Flavors Contain Popcorn Lung Chemical, Study Finds

December 8, 2015 – A study released today by the National Institute of Environmental Health Services found diacetyl in more than 75% of flavored e-cigarettes and vape juices tested by a research team at Harvard University, along with 2 other chemicals that are potentially harmful if ingested. The researchers looked for the presence of diacetyl in 51 e-cigarette flavors, as well as 2 other flavoring chemicals, acetoin and 2,3-pentanedione. To identify these compounds, the researchers put the flavored e-cigarettes into a chamber and drew air from them for 8 seconds a time. The air stream was then analyzed for its chemical components. Of the 51 flavors tested, 47 contained one of the 3 chemicals the researchers were looking for.

“Since most of the health concerns about e-cigarettes have focused on nicotine, there is still much we do not know about e-cigarettes,” said David Christiani, co-author of the study. “In addition to containing varying levels of the addictive substance nicotine, they also contain other cancer-causing chemicals, such as formaldehyde, and as our study shows, flavoring chemicals that can cause lung damage.”

What is Diacetyl?

Diacetyl is the flavoring used in electronic cigarettes, microwave popcorn and other similar flavored pre-packaged foods. Exposure to the diacetyl has been linked to bronchiolitis obliterans. Bronchiolitis obliterans is a rare and irreversible lung disease that has been commonly found in workers/employees in manufacturing facilities that were exposed to the vapors of the chemical diacetyl (butter flavoring).

The Occupational and Health Safety Administration (OSHA) has listed Diacetyl as an irritant to the eyes, skin, nose, throat and respiratory system.  Below is a copy of OSHA’s announcement regarding the health hazards of microwave popcorn butter flavorings containing diacetyl.

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) today announced that it is initiating a National Emphasis Program (NEP) to address the hazards and control measures associated with working in the microwave popcorn industry where butter flavorings containing diacetyl are used.

“We recognize that there are potential occupational health hazards associated with butter flavorings containing diacetyl,” said Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Edwin G. Foulke Jr. “Under this program, OSHA will target inspection resources to those workplaces where we anticipate the highest employee exposures to these hazards.”

The NEP applies to all workplaces where butter flavored microwave popcorn is being manufactured.

In January, 2006, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) released an investigative report on a microwave popcorn production facility. Several employees from this facility were diagnosed with bronchiolitis obliterans – a severe obstructive lung disease. Following a number of lung function tests and air sampling, NIOSH determined that inhalation exposure to butter flavoring chemicals is a risk for occupational lung disease. OSHA’s National Emphasis Program will provide direction on inspection targeting and procedures, methods of controlling the hazard and compliance assistance.

The 24 states and two U.S. territories that operate their own OSHA programs are encouraged, but not required, to adopt a similar emphasis program.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA’s role is to assure the safety and health of America’s working men and women by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual process improvement in workplace safety and health.

Symptoms of Bronchiolitis Obliterans

Bronchiolitis obliterans is a lung disease characterized by fixed airway obstruction. Inflammation and scarring occur in the airways of the lung, resulting in severe shortness of breath and dry cough.  Symptoms of bronchiolitis obliterans can start gradually, or severe symptoms can occur suddenly.  Included below is a list of the symptoms associated with bronchiolitis obliterans:

  • dry cough
  • shortness of breath
  • wheezing

Learn More: Bronchiolitis Obliterans Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

Do I Have a Diacetyl Exposure Lawsuit?

The Toxic Tort Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus exclusively on the representation of plaintiffs in diacetyl exposure lawsuits. We are handling individual and group litigation nationwide and currently accepting new cases in all 50 states.

Again, if you or a loved one have been exposed to diacetyl and diagnosed with bronchiolitis obliterans or popcorn lung, you should contact us immediately. You may be entitled to compensation and our attorneys can help.

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