State investigating Denver-area teen’s death that could be vaping-related


DENVER — The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is investigating a teen’s death that could be related to vaping.

The person who died is an 18-year-old male from the Denver metro area, according to CDPHE.

The department said Thursday that in addition to the death, it is investigating a number of cases of lung illnesses that could be related to vaping.

Shannon Barbare, a spokesperson for the department, said it investigates all reported cases to determine whether they meet the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s definition of vaping-related lung illness.

“Confirming the cause will take significant time as we await autopsy results and additional testing,” Barbare said in an email, adding that it typically takes between six and eight weeks to receive test results.

Barbare said CDPHE cannot currently provide further details about the death.

If the death is vaping related, it would be the first reported in Colorado. Since August 2019, there have been 11 confirmed and probable cases of vaping-related illness in Colorado. Nine of the 11 people were hospitalized.

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