It’s impossible to go anywhere and not notice countless people puffing on vaping devices. Over the last 10 years, e-cigarettes have exploded to become a multibillion-dollar industry. A company called Juul Labs has quickly become the leading manufacturer of e-cigarettes.
In the past year alone, sales of Juul vaping devices have skyrocketed 800 percent, making the Juul the market leader in e-cigarettes. But what the millions of adults and teens who use the devices to inhale nicotine don’t know is that the Juul may carry unexpected side effects and risks for illnesses such as pneumonia and heart disease.
Juul Labs has already been targeted in several lawsuits featuring accusations of shady marketing practices and hiding risks from the public. Learn more about the lawsuits and why government agencies are targeting e-cig manufacturers.
What is Juul?
Juul is a type of electronic cigarette or vaping device that uses changeable nicotine salts e-liquids to create vapor that users inhale. For the most part, the Juul is similar to other types of vaping devices. The major difference is the compact and discreet design akin to a USB drive.
The Juul carries other advantages over traditional e-cigarettes, including temperature-regulating mechanisms that prevent overheating and batteries that can be recharged by plugging into a USB port.
The devices use cartridges called Juulpods that contain different percentages of nicotine levels (5% and 3%). A single cartridge has the nicotine equivalent to about a pack of cigarettes and lasts around 200 puffs, according to the official website. The content of nicotine in Juul products is higher than the majority of other e-cigarette devices.
Background of Juul
The idea of e-cigarettes has been around for a long time. The first patent for a smokeless cigarette can be traced back to the early 1960s. However, modern e-cigarettes did not begin appearing until the early 2000s when a Chinese pharmacist pioneered a device that could vaporize a liquid containing nicotine.
E-cigarettes were initially created as a safer alternative to smoking tobacco-based cigarettes and were touted as a way to help people addicted to nicotine quit smoking. In the past few years, vaping has become a trendy pastime and a big part of youth culture.
The first Juul device was introduced in 2015 as part of PAX Labs, but the device didn’t take off until 2017 when Juul Labs was established as an independent company. Juul Labs grew exponentially in the following years, going from 200 employees in late 2017 to thousands of employees by 2019.
Juul quickly became the most popular vaping device, especially among young adults and teenagers who helped make the term “juuling” synonymous with vaping. By the end of 2018, Juul Labs had a dominant 76% market share in the e-cigarette market. This was bolstered by a $12.8 billion investment from cigarette giant Altria Group.
Juul Side Effects
Although Juul and other vaping devices are frequently called safer alternatives to regular cigarettes, electronic cigarettes carry their own risks and side effects.
One of the main and obvious side effects of juuling is addiction. Nicotine is a highly addictive substance. For decades, the majority of smokers have wanted to give up cigarettes, but the addictive nature of nicotine made quitting difficult. Some people need other drugs and nicotine-replacement therapy to quit. Although e-cigarettes may be less harmful than cigarettes, they can still be just as addictive.
Use of nicotine can affect brain development, especially in kids. Vaping with Juul may increase the risk of mood disorders and impulse control problems. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services also warns that nicotine can affect the formation of synapses, which can alter parts of the brain that control attention and learning.
Pneumonia, Asthma, and Other Lung Problems
Other side effects of Juul include lung issues. Vaping has been found to worsen existing lung problems like asthma and COPD. Another study in the European Respiratory Journal linked e-cigarettes to an increased risk of developing pneumonia.
A case report also linked e-cigarettes to hypersensitivity pneumonitis and eosinophilic pneumonia.
So Is Juul Bad For You?
Early evidence suggests that e-cigarettes are not a harmless alternative to smoking cigarettes. In fact, they carry many known side effects.
Unfortunately, information is still sparse about the health effects associated with using Juul. As more studies come out about how Juul affects the body, it’s expected that more harmful side effects will come to light.
Despite only being around for a few years, Juul Labs has already been the target of several lawsuits. The company has been in the crosshairs over claims it used deceptive marketing tactics to target kids and teens who are under the legal smoking age.
In April 2019, a Florida firm announced a class-action lawsuit against Juul Labs for violating federal racketeering laws, according to United Press International. Plaintiffs accuse the company of using many of the same tactics previously used by cigarette companies to target teenagers and knowingly increase youth addiction to nicotine.
This follows previous suits from 2018 that claimed Juul Labs caused nicotine addiction in consumers by using cartridges with high levels of nicotine potency. Plaintiffs range from 14-year-olds to adults across several states, according to The Washington Post.
Juul Labs has been the target of investigations and bans by local governments and even the federal government. In late 2018, the Surgeon General issued a rare national advisory about the vaping epidemic among youth and singled out the Juul for its easily concealable design. This came a month after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned that e-cigarette use among high school students rose 78%.
Juul Pneumonia Lawsuits
If all of those lawsuits weren’t enough, Juul Labs is also facing potential legal action over its link to pneumonia.
Studies have shown that vaping with devices like the Juul could increase the presence of pneumonia-causing bacteria in the lungs. Other experiments have also found that vaping can cause cell damage and inflammation, often associated with lung problems like asthma.
Although the evidence is still in the early stages, lawyers across the country are currently pursuing cases where people developed pneumonia after vaping with a Juul device. If you were diagnosed with pneumonia as a result of Juul, contact an attorney immediately to learn more about filing a lawsuit.
Speak with a Juul Injury Lawyer Today
At The Eichholz Law Firm, we believe corporations owe it to their customers to deliver a safe product. Our dedicated attorneys want to help those who have been injured by the Juul e-cigarette by holding Juul Labs accountable for their products. Victims who have suffered conditions such as Juul pneumonia and respiratory failure after using a Juul should seek legal advice immediately.
Our experienced Juul Injury Lawyers have looked into the details of the Juul lawsuit and are prepared to represent victims who may be eligible for recovery. Don’t delay getting assistance for a problem that was out of your control—until now. We can help you figure out your options and guide you through the legal process. For a FREE consultation to speak with one of our experienced and compassionate attorneys, contact us today. Call (855) 551-1019, or complete an online form at the top of this page for your free consultation. Our team is available to answer all of your questions and begin the process of getting you the compensation you deserve.
History of Juul
In 2017, the Juul became the most profitable and widely used e-cigarette in the United States. The following year, Juul Labs saw an explosive increase in sales that reached about 800 percent and gave the company control of 71 percent of their market share. While the San Francisco-based company has gained rapid growth over the years, it has also come under scrutiny from federal and local authorities. The introduction of the Juul led to a significant increase in vaping among teenagers. Studies from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show that the rate of e-cigarette use by teenagers has been increasing since 2011 and the rate of teenagers smoking regular cigarettes has been decreasing. In 2017, which was the same year the Juul became America’s number one e-cigarette, there was a large increase in the rate of high school students using e-cigarettes. The combination of controversial influences on America’s youth and reports of harmful health side effects caused by the Juul has put Juul Labs face to face with lawsuits and FDA regulations that are threatening the future success of the company.
Juul Labs Timeline
- In 2004, Adam Bowen and James Monsees (founders of Juul Labs) started to create e-cigarette prototypes.
- In 2007, Bowen and Monsees came up with a business and successfully acquired large investors. The pair then incorporated with the name Ploom.
- In 2012, Ploom introduced Pax, a premium vaporizer.
- In 2015, Ploom was rebranded as Pax Labs and introduced the Juul in June 2015.
- In 2017, Juul Labs spun off from Pax Labs as an independent company and saw massive success. Juul Labs market share increased from 10 percent to nearly 50 percent and surpassed its competitor, British American Tobacco.
- In 2018, Juul Labs began expanding their workforce by adding an average of 120 employees each month. Wells Fargo estimated that Juul Labs was valued at $38 billion at the time with annual revenues of around $2 billion. By the month of July, the company had a valuation of $15 billion. In April, Juul Labs attracted attention from the FDA because of its controversial marketing tactics and health side effects.
- In 2019, the e-cigarette company is currently under fire by lawsuits and FDA regulations.
Jeniece Pettitt and Adam Isaak. “Inside Juul Labs — how the vaping giant hooked its users and became a $15 billion company”, CNBC, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/09/11/how-juul-became-a-15-billion-vaping-giant.html. Accessed May 3, 2019.
Angelica LaVito. “Popular e-cigarette Juul’s sales have surged almost 800 percent over the past year”, CNBC, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/07/02/juul-e-cigarette-sales-have-surged-over-the-past-year.html. Accessed May 3, 2019.
CDC. “National Youth Tobacco Survey (NYTS)”, Center for Disease Control and Prevention, https://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/surveys/nyts/index.htm//. Accessed May 3, 2019.