National vaping epidemic being seen in the valley

FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live)- The vaping epidemic hitting the nation hard is now being seen right here in our own backyards. This comes as the CDC finds a possible culprit to the rash of vaping-related illnesses.

The North Dakota Department of Health has gotten dozens of ‘self-reported’ cases about possible vaping-related injuries in just the last couple of months.

One of the areas that has seen a handful of these cases is the southern valley. In fact at Sanford in Fargo, they've had seven people admitted with a vaping-related illness, two of them have been in critical care on a ventilator. Over at Essentia, the numbers are pretty similar. They've had five cases in the last three months.

Now, these numbers come on the same day that the CDC has confirmed a chemical oil derived from Vitamin E acetate could be the culprit in these injuries. According to research, Vitamin E acetate was found in the lungs of dozens of people with these illnesses. That compound is used as a thickener in vaping liquid, particularly in black market vape cartridges.

Over the river in Minnesota, there have been at least 73 severe lung injuries this year alone. Three of them have died from their injuries, that's according to the Minnesota Department of Health.

But that isn't the case in Moorhead. An official with the Clay County Health Department tells us they've had no reported cases of the illness.