Northwell Health doctors Help Solve Patient’s Vaping-related Illness

This story, a press release really, contains two of my pet peeves, a self-aggrandizing medical conglomerate, and the myth that marijuana is an accepted medicine. Northwell Health, one of the major hospital networks in the greater NYC area, held a press conference to advertise their treatment of a patient for Vape Lung and advocate against vaping, but didn’t mention that marijuana is not really an accepted medical treatment.

“A self-described “health nut” is lucky to be alive after Northwell Health pulmonologists identified the culprit behind a devastating lung illness that left him hospitalized and near death.

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“A THC vaping pen that Jonathan Doneson used to calm his nerves following the stress of starting a new business was actually killing him…

 “No one could figure out why the antibiotics weren’t working,” said Mr. Doneson. “When Dr. Makaryus asked me about my smoking or drinking habits, I told him that I had started using a THC vaping pen about a month earlier. My wife and I had just started a new business, and I thought it would be good to help control my stress.”

“I’m thinking of these THC vaping pens as chronic suicide,” said Mr. Doneson. “These things are not safe … they are killing people. If you are using them, throw them away immediately. If your kids are using them, just throw them away. They are dangerous.”

The message about the dangers of vaping is useful, but they could have added an explanation like the Cleveland Clinic’s that marijuana is not medicine.

I wondered how the press release would have read if the patient became sick from smoking crack cocaine instead.

“A self-described “health nut” is lucky to be alive after Big Med’s providers identified the culprit behind a devastating lung illness that left him hospitalized and near death.

“A crack pipe that Ayam Gullible used to boost his energy to help him start a new business was actually killing him…

 “No one could figure out why the antibiotics weren’t working,” said Mr. Gullible. “I told the doctor that I started hitting the crack pipe about a month earlier. My wife and I had just started a new business, and I thought it would be good to boost my energy.”

“After all, Sigmund Freud said cocaine would cure opium addiction, neurasthenia, and melancholia. That’s a good enough recommendation for me, but I’m thinking these crack pipes are chronic suicide. Who could have predicted that burning toxic chemicals and breathing them deep in my lungs would be a problem?” said Mr. Gullible. 

From now on, Mr. Gullible will follow Big Med’s new advice. “We’ve acquired a patent from a pharmacist named Pemberton so our patients can use their medical cocaine by drinking a carbonated elixir.”

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  2 comments for “Northwell Health doctors Help Solve Patient’s Vaping-related Illness

  1. Lawrence Kutner, Ph.D.
    September 19, 2019 at 6:04 pm

    Yes, and heroin was developed as a “safe” alternative to opium back in the 19th Century.

    There’s another important issue here. Right now, it looks like one of the commonalities among these clusters of serious pulmonary problems is the purchase of “black market” vaping liquids on the street that contain oils that attack the alveoli when heated and aspirated. The response by politicians and some physicians like the one you cite is to ban the delivery mechanism.

    Yet about 15 months ago, when there was a point-source outbreak of e. coli linked to romaine lettuce that hospitalized more than 200 and killed 5, no one wrote the headline, “Deadly Bacterium Found in Food; Don’t Eat Your Vegetables!”

    • Michael J. McKenzie, MD
      September 29, 2019 at 12:11 pm

      Thats the key…99% of all these vaping-related illnesses are due to Black Market Vape Cartridges that are shoddy, have adulterants and cutting agents (like Vit E Acetate). I do not see adverse reactions from people using vape devices from licensed dispensaries. That is what happens with prohibition. Kinda like the bathtub gin that was harming people during EtOH prohibition.

      Is vaporization of cannabinoids a legit delivery method?? YES
      -It is not just Vape Pens. There is also smoking of whole flower, and dry herb vaporization using devices such as a Volcano/balloon.
      -It allows the patient to microdose (a 3-sec drag gives approx 1-2mg of THC)
      -Fast onset (can feel effects in 15 min vs. 1-hr with sublingual or 2+hrs with edible)
      -The downside of vaporization is that for some, it can be a pulmonary irritant; also, the oil in the chamber can sometimes gum up

      If there were any incidents involving products from LICENSED dispensaries in Florida, that would be all over social media at lightning speed.

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