Did I burn my trachea/bronchia?
June 5, 2022 2:59 PM   Subscribe

I vaped cannabis flower Thursday night and woke up Friday morning feeling like someone had sledgehammered my chest. Did I burn myself?

I guess I'm wondering if it's even possible to have burned myself without feeling it in my mouth or immediately. I'm taking it as a sign to switch 100% to edibles which will help me cut down which I need to do anyway.

I took antigen COVID tests Friday, Saturday and Sunday morning, all negative.

Besides my upper chest and back of throat hurting like hell, I felt extreme fatigue, some muscle aches & under-jaw lymph nodes ached awfully.

The crazy thing is that I didn't cough at *all* Fri and maybe once Saturday.

I'm mid-50's & smoked a pack a day of cigarettes from 18-30s, then on & off for a few more years.

I was taking acetaminophen 2x 325mg every 4 hours on Friday until I was going to hit the 24 hour limit, then every 6 hours. Saturday morning was my last dose, though it still hurt a bit Sat. Barely feel it today.

Back of throat looked red, but not infected.

I've suffered GERD and an ulcer before and take OTC omeprazole daily. I did take a dose of 5-years-expired ondansetron Friday night & it didn't do anything.

You Are Not My Doctor. I'm mostly looking for other vape users' or smoke inhalation victim's experiences. I was impatient and did take several hits in a row without breathing normal air.
posted by ASCII Costanza head to Health & Fitness (11 answers total)
Response by poster: Oh- vape is a Arizer Extreme Q which fills a bag like a Volcano that I take outside. I pre-heat for 6 minutes at 451 deg F before I fill the bag.
posted by ASCII Costanza head at 3:01 PM on June 5, 2022

It seems quite unlikely that the symptoms you describe (extreme fatigue, muscle aches, aching lymph nodes, sore back of throat and upper chest) would be caused by a burn caused by vaping. A respiratory infection of some kind is a much better match for these symptoms. I would continue to rest, take pain killers as desired, and follow up with further Covid tests, as it is common for it to take a few days from the onset of symptoms until testing positive on a rapid test. It is also entirely possible that you have another respiratory infection.

I'm struggling to imagine how the vapour in the bag could have been at any significant temperature after sitting in the bag for long enough for the bag to fill and then you to take the bag outside, etc. Many people inhale directly from a vapourizer without burning their throat, so it seems very unlikely that you did so with vapour that had been cooling for some time. It also sounds pretty unlikely that you would have burned yourself without feeling anything at all.
posted by ssg at 3:33 PM on June 5, 2022 [8 favorites]

A couple thoughts from a fellow vaper :

1. It seems unlikely that you would have burned yourself without noticing. If the air was THAT hot, you would have noticed it on your mouth and tongue, or you would have had more immediate burning sensations in your throat.

2. 451 seems like a high temp to run your vape. I set my handheld vape to 385 and I still end up combusting sometimes.

3. Volcano devices are weird because you can fill the bag with way more vapor than you can usually inhale in one breath. It’s really hard to control/measure your dose.

4. Correlation does not equal causation.
posted by gnutron at 3:38 PM on June 5, 2022 [1 favorite]

Best answer: If you are mid-50s and having unexplained chest pain, I beg of you to get that shit checked out immediately to make sure it’s not on the heart attack spectrum.
posted by chiquitita at 3:47 PM on June 5, 2022 [14 favorites]

Anecdotally, I've had a number of friends get covid and test negative for the first 3-4 days of feeling ill before testing positive on day 5 or so. The RATs are only about 60% sensitive (they only pick up ~60% of positive cases) so a negative RAT doesn't mean covid negative necessarily.
posted by lulu68 at 3:48 PM on June 5, 2022 [3 favorites]

Propylene glycol was allergen of the year in 2018,
posted by amtho at 3:54 PM on June 5, 2022 [2 favorites]

I always feel like shit after vaping, including chest pains etc. That being said, chest pain is dangerous, get it checked out.
posted by stoneandstar at 4:10 PM on June 5, 2022

Best answer: Dry-herb vapor is hot and dry, which can certainly irritate your lungs like you’re describing. To be honest, what you’re describing sounds to me like pretty normal “overdoing it”. Fixes to explore before going edibles-only:

- turn that thing down! 451f is awfully close to combustion, and the nasty chemical by-products that come with it (lookin’ at you, benzene). Try 380-ish for a heady high, or closer to 420-ish if you need a deep body stone.
- use the EQ’s whip and run your vapor through water (especially warm water for the sake of humidifying the vapor).
- pace yourself! Take a moment between hits to breath some fresh air. Don’t take such a large hit that you can’t finish off your inhale with fresh air.
- if your weed is bone dry, consider storing it with some 62% humidity packs like Boveda.
- make sure you’re well hydrated in general, and drink some cool liquid immediately prior to taking a hit (and after).
posted by a box and a stick and a string and a bear at 4:25 PM on June 5, 2022 [3 favorites]

Propylene glycol was allergen of the year in 2018

Just an fyi for future commenters: OP is referring to dry herb vaping, not nicotine/weed concentrate vaping (i.e. places you might run into additives like glycol).
posted by a box and a stick and a string and a bear at 5:36 PM on June 5, 2022 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Heart attacks can feel like indigestion and lung pain. Intervention can be lifesaving. Please get checked out today!
posted by nouvelle-personne at 6:37 PM on June 5, 2022 [3 favorites]

Institute of Human Anatomy: Vaping THIS CLIP CONTAINS ANATOMICAL DISSECTION and a medical explanation of how vaping can damage the lungs. I cued it to 3:33 to cut straight to the explanation without going through the other dissections. If you have a problem with looking at anatomical cadavers, please feel free to ignore. It will give you a clear picture of what could be causing your symptoms as you describe. I hope it is helpful information.
posted by effluvia at 9:18 PM on June 5, 2022

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