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Michigan teen suffers seizure after vaping

Posted at 10:53 AM, Apr 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-26 10:53:35-04

GRANDVILLE, MI.  — A Michigan teen is speaking out about the dangers of vaping.

WILX has been tracking the federal government’s investigation into new concerns about vaping and possible links to seizures.

The issue has become personal for a West Michigan television reporter. WOOD TV8’s Barton Dieter’s daughter was driving in Grandville, on the west side of the state. That’s when she had a seizure, after she says she took a drag off a friend’s vape pen.

17-year-old Sophie Dieter says it happened while her car was at a stop light. She says she had vaped in the past but had quit several weeks before the incident.

She says the amount of nicotine in the vape pen she was using was the highest concentration available.

Dieter says she didn’t remember anything that happened between when her seizure started and when she woke up in an ambulance. She says she hopes people will consider the risks before vaping.

Sophie Dieters, Grandville High School Senior "I could have been on the highway or something. And this could have happened," said Sophie Dieters, a Senior at Grandville High School. "I would just tell them (others who may vape) do adequate research and to, like, really think about would they are like...doing to their bodies and potentially the long term affects that it could have."

Sophie’s friend in the passenger seat knew exactly what was going on, because her relatives have had seizures before.

According to Sophie’s family, the teen had never had a seizure before her recent incident. Testing at a West Michigan Hospital found no other possible causes besides vaping.

While the Federal Drug Administration is investigating the possible connection between vaping and seizures, a West Michigan County Sheriff says this is something he’s been seeing for years.

“We've had half a dozen or so in the span of three weeks at local schools - one on a school bus, one at an after-school event," said Sheriff Kim Cole, of the Mason County Sheriff’s Department. “What we found is that we had upwards of 10 kids locally who had experienced seizures following vaping."

Sheriff Cole says he got a hold of local law makers and within a few months, the legal age to buy vaping products was bumped up to 18 years and older. He says that has not stopped underage children from getting their hands on them.

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