Second Vaping-Related Death in NYC Confirmed by Medical Examiner

The medical examiner ruled the 34-year-old man died of a combination of ailments which were complicated by the lung injury that stems from using electronic cigarettes

A second person in New York City died as a result of vaping and e-cigarette use, the city's medical examiner has ruled.

Jonathan Sosa, 34, died on November 9, 2019 at Bellevue Hospital in Manhattan. More than three months after his death, Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Barbara Sampson ruled that Sosa died as a result of a combination of respiratory distress syndrome, heart disease, heart failure and pneumonia — all of which were complicated by the illness known as EVALI, or e-cigarette vaping associated lung injury.

Sosa's "pre-existing medical problems and complicated hospital course made it unclear the full extent to which vaping may have contributed, making the manner of death undetermined," Sampson said in the determination of death. "However, based on our thorough investigation and medical record review, we have determined the death to be vaping-related."

A 17-year-old boy from the Bronx was the first person to have died as a result of vaping. He was pronounced dead at Montefiore Hospital in October, although it was unclear what type of vaping product he had been using.

While it still is not clear what in particular from e-cigarette use leads to the health complications, the CDC says that many of the patients have used THC vaping products and that national and regional findings suggest that products with the compound play a role in the outbreak. 

As of February 18, 68 deaths as a result of EVALI cases had been confirmed in 29 states. There have been 2,800 hospitalizations across the country as well.

Contact Us