The state's first vaping-associated lung injury has been confirmed, the Oklahoma State Department of Health said Thursday.

The patient is a Tulsa County resident under the age of 18. 

State health officials began investigating the case in early September when they issued an advisory to health care providers requesting them to report any cases of severe pulmonary disease of unknown origin or a history of e-cigarette use. 

“We are committed to working with our state and federal partners to learn everything we can about this investigation in order to prevent further injury and potential death,” said state Commissioner of Health Gary Cox. “E-cigarettes are unregulated, and of great concern is the significant number of young people using the products. The public is advised to consider refraining from using all e-cigarette and vaping products while the investigation is ongoing.”

Patients involved in the nationwide investigation have reported symptoms such as prolonged cough, shortness of breath, chest pain, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, fever and abdominal pain. Individuals who have a history of e-cigarette use or vaping in the last 90 days, and are experiencing any of these symptoms should contact a health care provider as soon as possible. 

State health officials strongly advise against buying e-cigarettes and vaping products off the street and modifying products or adding substances not intended by the manufacturer. 

At no time are e-cigarette or vaping products recommended for use by youth, young adults, pregnant women or adults who do not currently use tobacco products. There is no safe amount of nicotine exposure, and there is no e-cigarette product or vape device recommended by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a cessation device.

People who are using e-cigarette or vaping devices as a method for quitting tobacco are urged not to return to smoking cigarettes. Adult smokers who are attempting to quit should use evidence-based treatments including counseling and FDA-approved medications. Those who need help quitting tobacco products, including e-cigarettes and vaping products, should contact a health care provider or the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline at 1-800-QUIT-NOW (784-8669).