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To vape or not to vape? CDC wants you to stay away...for now

Almost 11 million Americans use e-cigarettes, but that number includes one in five high school students.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is warning vapers to put the pen down because it could be a health hazard. 

"A lot of people vape like in college like I'm surrounded by people. It's so trendy that everyone just wants to try it," USF Junior Taylor Campbell said.

Hundreds of people have developed breathing issues from e-cigs. Health officials have identified 450 possible cases in 33 states and five deaths that are likely related to vaping.

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"Is there a safe cigarette that you can make? The answer I think is no. There are no safe cigarettes. I don't believe there will ever be a safe vaping device," said Dr. Seth Forman with ForCare Medical Group.

The CDC's investigation is just getting started. The CDC hasn't figured out what the danger is, and they haven't narrowed it down to a specific brand either. They are concerned with vaping products purchased on the street or tampered with by users.

"It's about as safe as it can be. It's definitely not as bad as smoking cigarettes," vape user Roman Musso said.

Musso works at a smoke shop in St. Petersburg. He started vaping to quit smoking.

"I smoked since I was 14-years-old, so about like six years. I've been off smoking cigarettes for like almost a year now," Musso said.

Vaping has changed his life. He thinks the negative attention in the media comes from younger kids that pick it up.

"It's unfortunate that we have young kids out here just trying to look cool and picking it up for no reason when they really don't have a problem," said Musso.

But, some people wonder if this alternative to smoking could make other people sick, is it really safe?

"There's a lot of things that people don't know what they're putting into their bodies," USF Junior Alex Cuneo said.

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