KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Loren Hayes is raising money for Teens Against Vaping after she says her son almost lost his life to his vaping device.
“I remember seeing one in his pocket when he was 16,” said mother, Loren Hayes. “I told him then to stop, and he said he did, but we’re here now because of it.”
Hayes’ 19-year-old son Mitchell spent the last three days in Saint Luke’s ICU.
“At first I thought it was the flu so I told him to take Tylenol,” explained Hayes.
Mitchell’s mother told FOX4 that he had an achy body and a fever.
“That’s how it started, but then he could not stop vomiting.”
After three separate ER visits Mitchell was admitted into ICU where doctors said he had bilateral pneumonia and critically low oxygen levels.
“Vaping is terrible and Mitchell was warned and coached,” she said. “He’s heard all the terrible stories about what’s going on and its an unknown; there’s really no proven data yet.”
Hayes said doctors fond shards of glass in her son’s X-ray of his lungs.
“Anytime you’re putting a chemical into your lungs, it’s never good, whether that be a nicotine or something to make it taste like cotton candy; it’s just never good.”
After the third day in ICU Mitchell was moved to a less critical room where doctors say he is stable.
“I just don’t want any other child to go through what Mitchell and his family are going through. It’s been hard and stressful and we’ve all missed work,” explained Hayes. “I want people to know, you can be very sick and while Mitchell might be out of the woods, one of this friends or classmates might not be so lucky.”
Mitchell told his mother that he is done vaping and she has hopes that others will follow in his footsteps.