A teenager was hospitalized Thursday due to collapsed lungs that were apparently caused by using electronic cigarettes.
The 16-year-old boy was being treated at the Schneider Children’s Medical Center of Israel, where he was listed in serious condition.
The hospital said he was being treated in the intensive care unit with an extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) machine, which provides cardiac and respiratory assistance.
The boy’s mother asked Israelis to pray for his health and urged other parents not to let their children use electronic cigarettes, often referred to as vapes.
The Israeli Association of Public Health Physicians called for greater preventive measures to block the sale of tobacco products to children and urged a ban on electronic cigarettes.
“Using electronic cigarettes endangers lives,” Hagai Levine, a leading public health official, tweeted in response.
In 2019, the Health Ministry considered a total ban on electronic cigarettes due to reports regarding electronic cigarette-related deaths in the US amid a surge in vape usage, particularly among young people.
In June, the US Food and Drug Administration banned the sale of vape products produced by Juul Labs Inc., due to the high levels of nicotine found in the flavored oils produced by the company.
Israel already placed a ban on importing Juul products containing more than 20 milligrams of nicotine in 2018. Electronic cigarette usage remains legal.