Cadmium chemical pneumonitis causing VAPI?

A new theory has emerged about VAPI: it may be caused by cadmium chemical pneumonitis, because VAPI has similarities to metal fume fever.

European Respiratory Review 2018 wrote a good overview:
Cadmium in tobacco smokers: a neglected link to lung disease?

One Colorado company (selling CBD and CBN, as well as other services) has hypothesized cadmium in solder for batteries may be part of the cause:

In the first of this three-part series on Vaping-Associated Pulmonary Injury (VAPI), I will introduce a compound with the motive, means, and opportunity to cause the illness. Part 2 will identify the common point of origin linking vape users in the United States and why Europe is unaffected, and, finally, Part 3 will outline a rational harm-reduction based approach for evaluating the safety and continued use of these products.

(We can list 6-14 days for “Onset of symptoms post-exposure” for VAPI, according to the CDC/FDA)

I am not thrilled at the source, considering they don’t seem to be a research lab, and they sell CBD and CBN. But then I read about the founder (below). I hope that this work from Colorado Green Labs gets attention from experts to weigh in on its merits. @MagisterChemist what do you think?

Frank Conrad
​Founder

Frank Conrad holds degrees in Molecular Biology, Business Administration, and Biomedical Sciences. He has worked as an analytical chemist and applied scientist in the cannabis industry since early 2014.

​Prior to co-founding Colorado Green Lab in 2014, Mr. Conrad was employed as a biochemist in the biofuel industry (2011-2014), and in various areas of academic research and education 2000-2010).

Mr. Conrad and CGL have been instrumental in shaping standards and practices of the Colorado cannabis testing facilities through active engagement with regulatory agencies, industry groups, and by providing educational outreach on the scientific underpinnings and socio-legal impact of cannabis cultivation and use.

The next part of their three part blog is titled Part 2: Vape Pen Vivisection

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Thank for you the news story link @stoopkid and @peasandlovage

Colorado Lab Results Point to New Culprit in Vaping Cases: A Specific Chemical Used in Cheap Vape Pens

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As interesting as this hypothesis is… cadmium metal and cadmium salts have very high boiling points. Meaning that you wouldn’t be inhaling them until you hit 700 *C.

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Interesting enough. Nobody involved with this report has medical expertise. Should be looked into along with every other worthy hypothesis by professionals with much greater knowledge of these things than I.

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Your input is appreciated and you raise a good point that leads me to think that this lab’s theory could potentially be a dead end. Science Direct says MFF could be caused by inhalation of the dusts too, not just fumes. It is worth noting that it’s usually caused by oxide fumes but this does seem like the rare time that the dusts could be directly inhaled. Highly doubt they’re taking the time to clean out dust from a cartridge that sells for 50 cents

Side note, has anyone found the second or third installment on this? This is not exactly the best website I’ve seen

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I think maybe it’s not out yet.

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You’re correct. It’s not out yet.

Also cadmium hydroxide boils at 300°C

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Looks like I missed a few ligands.

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I’ve been waiting for a study like this. For two weeks in August, I made heavy use of a cartridge purchased in a dispensary and used a very cheap vape pen. This was the only vaping I’ve done in the past 7 months.

Last week (about 7 weeks after use), I experienced nausea, shortness of breath, a metallic taste in my mouth, frothy phlegm and some gastrointestinal distress. I have a doctor’s appointment Thursday. I’m not in any immediate distress, but it appears these symptoms can worsen dramatically over time. I never believed it was the cartridge. Obviously very concerned this author could be correct.

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Best wishes for your full recovery. I would be interested to learn what the doctor says after you visit.

I will keep you posted. Obviously feeling symptomatic prevents me from processing the news in any rational way, but this theory would explain how multiple people are getting sick from multiple sources of cartridges. And in regards to the “black market carts” logic would dictate that young kids buying cartridges off the street or internet would also purchase a cheap vape pen. It would also explain why the pathology resembles chemical burns.

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It does sort of explain the pattern of incidence in my mind. I guess the main objection i can see is why would this be happening more now than in previous years

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My only guess at this point is a combination of increasing popularity, uneducated consumers using cheap/high voltage batteries, and genetics.

More people using it makes even more people use it, exponentially increasing the chance of allergic responses. It also means more dumb people using the absolute cheapest equipment they can find, likely not meant for these style carts, and running crazy high voltages, because “clouds bro.”

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I always turn down voltage/wattage as much as will still allow evaporation. My only problem has been that this ends up clogging every set up I’ve ever done it with. Not sure what the answer to that is… Smaller holes and smaller/fewer hits? Anyone else have this problem?

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The toxin does not have to boil, just reach the lungs in the aerosol or as particles. Solder melts at a lower temperature than the pure components. Workers in the auto industry inhale cadmium and other heavy metals while spray painting at room temperature.

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Perhaps a rise in substandard factories to meet the explosive demand for empty Dank Vape/counterfeit packaging. I’ll try to dig it up but there was a documentary not long ago about these factories popping up left and right for nicotine vape hardware.The DHGate/Alibaba cartridge manufacturers seem to be changing things up constantly. One thing that’s been showing up a lot on social media are cartridges that are the same size as 1ML cartridges but they have an abnormally fat center post so they only actually store about 0.5ML of oil. So it’s a 0.5ML cartridge that looks like a 1ML. It’s outrageous

I’d be willing to bet they probably don’t have a lot of verifiable, authentic Jupiter Research/CCells being submitted by patients. Like the ones that the legal industry uses.

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This might be the right time for a push to move away from carts and switch over to the pod system .

What is so inherently different about the pods compared to regular cartridges? Don’t they still have soldered connections? Honestly asking, I haven’t messed with the pods.

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