Poison control calls concerning children, e-cigarettes up 400% - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Poison control calls concerning children, e-cigarettes up 400%

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The center said they have seen a 400 percent increase in calls concerning children getting into the cigarettes. The center said they have seen a 400 percent increase in calls concerning children getting into the cigarettes.
Ashley Webb Ashley Webb

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - The Kentucky Poison Control Center is issuing a warning after seeing a rise in children exposed to the ingredients inside electronic cigarettes.

The center said they have seen a 400 percent increase in calls concerning children getting into the cigarettes.

The different flavors and bright colors are tempting for children. The center said some ingest them or rub the liquid on their skin.

"The flavorings, they do taste exactly like they say, so if it's watermelon it tastes like watermelon," Jeff Ruwe with Flavorz Electronic Cigarettes in the Highlands said. "So you want to keep it out of the reach of children."

Ashley Webb, Director of Kentucky Regional Poison Control Center of Kosair Children's Hospital said it worried them that they liquid cartridges and cigarettes have no child resistant container.

"Generally we're seeing nausea, throwing up, flushing, sweating," Webb said of the symptoms. "Then complaints of with adults, we've seen headaches and dizziness. The concern we have is that you can see changes in heart rate and blood pressure."

If it gets on a child's skin wash it off immediately.

"We get concerned about serious symptoms in a cigarette which may have as little as 13 milligrams so in some of these cartridges seeing over 14 to 22 and even higher milligrams strengths. There is potential for a serious outcome," Webb said.

The cartridges are combinations of nicotine, propylene glycol, vegetable glycol, flavoring and other additives.

A 2009 FDA analysis found the e-cigarettes contained carcinogens and other hazardous chemicals such as diethylene glycol which is used to make anti-freeze.

The poison control center isn't telling the public not to use the cigarettes, they're asking users to use caution, especially around children, and make sure the cartridges are out of reach.

Call the poison control hotline 1-800-222-1222 if something is to happen.  

Symptoms usually occur within 30 minutes.

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