person holding vape pen.
Julie Hambleton
Julie Hambleton
January 24, 2024 ·  5 min read

Dying Young? 22-Year-Old Vaping Addict Has a 1% Chance of Survival

Vaping has become increasingly popular, particularly among young people. Originally thought to be better for you than smoking cigarettes, many teens and young adults turned to vape pens. Unfortunately, it turns out that vaping is not better for you than cigarettes, it just has different consequences. This young 22-year-old vaping addict is the most recent victim, currently battling for his life in the hospital. This is his story, and why you should be educating your children and teens on the dangers of vaping.

Vaping Addict Fighting For His Life

In a heartbreaking turn of events, a 22-year-old named Jackson Allard from North Dakota was given a mere 1% chance of survival after his vaping addiction led him to be hospitalized for months. Initially admitted to the University of Minnesota due to stomach problems, Allard’s condition quickly worsened, revealing the detrimental consequences of his vape habit. (1)

The Struggle for Survival

As already mentioned, Allard originally came to the hospital complaining of ongoing stomach problems. Upon further examination, medical professionals discovered that Allard was suffering from influenza 4 and pneumonia. These illnesses were severely affecting his lungs and oxygen levels. Faced with a critical situation, doctors made the difficult decision to intubate him, hoping to give his lungs the best possible chance to heal. However, it became evident that the only viable option for his survival was a double lung transplant. The devastating news of his slim chances of survival came as a heavy blow to Allard’s family, who were determined to support him throughout his battle for life.

Jackson Allard in hospital
Image Credit:  Valley News Live

“At one point, a doctor said he had a 1 percent chance of living and we said, ‘He’s fighting, he’s fought for how many weeks we’re going to give him a chance to fight, we’re not going to stop any procedures or anything.” said his grandmother, Doreen Hurburlt. “He’s just friendly, he’s outgoing, everybody’s just attracted to his energy and how much fun he is.”

The Battle Against Addiction

Hurlburt revealed that the family had been urging him to quit vaping even before his health deteriorated. Despite their efforts, Allard was a heavy vaper who justified his habit by stating it was a safer alternative to smoking traditional cigarettes. Unfortunately, he was unaware of the potential long-term consequences. Hurlburt shares the doctors’ alarming message, stating that vaping can cause permanent lung damage in as little as five years, thereby debunking the notion that vaping is a harmless choice.

“You have to stop vaping, and we kept telling him that over and over and over again, and he was a heavy vaper. He vaped all the time, but he said, ‘It’s better than cigarettes,” Hurlburt recalled. “Well they said, with cigarettes in 50 years you’ll have lung cancer, in five years, if you vape they will see you with permanent lung damage.”

Now on the long road to recovery, Allard’s life will never be the same. He will never be able to smoke or drink any kind of alcohol. He will likely need another lung transplant in his lifetime. His family have started a GoFundMe page to help with the young man’s medical expenses, as he will have to stay in Minneapolis for at least another six months while he recovers. His grandma says that her grandson is now committed to raising awareness of the dangers of vaping. He doesn’t want anyone else to have to go through what he has gone through.

Read: Timeline of what happens to your body when you give up vaping

Understanding Vaping

Vaping refers to the act of inhaling and exhaling vapor produced by an electronic device commonly known as an e-cigarette or vape pen. These devices work by heating a liquid that usually contains nicotine, flavorings, and other chemicals, creating an aerosol that is then inhaled into the lungs. While initially marketed as a safer alternative to smoking, vaping poses its own set of health risks.

The Dangers of Vaping

Doctors and medical experts have stated that we still don’t yet know all of the effects, and especially the long-term damage, that vaping can do. That being said, we are becoming increasingly aware of how dangerous this habit is. So far, we know these dangers include:

  1. Chemical Ingredients: Research conducted by John Hopkins University has revealed that many of the chemical ingredients inside vapes have not been fully identified. Among those that have been identified, several are considered harmful substances, including pesticides and flavorings linked to respiratory irritation. These chemical compounds can have devastating effects on the lungs and overall health. (2)
  2. Nicotine Addiction: Vaping liquids often contain nicotine, a highly addictive substance. Nicotine addiction not only leads to dependence but also increases the risk of heart disease, lung disorders, and other serious health conditions. (3)
  3. Lung Damage: Continuous exposure to the chemicals and toxins found in vape aerosols can cause significant damage to the lungs over time. This can result in respiratory issues, decreased lung function, and even irreversible lung diseases.

Quitting Vaping

For those looking to break free from their vaping addiction, it’s important to remember that quitting is a process that requires determination and support. Here are some steps to consider:

  1. Set a Quit Date: Choose a specific date to stop vaping and commit to it.
  2. Seek Support: Inform your friends and family about your decision to quit and request their understanding and support. Consider joining support groups or seeking professional counseling to help you through the journey.
  3. Eliminate Triggers: Identify situations or activities that make you reach for your vape and find healthier alternatives. Keep yourself occupied with new hobbies or activities to distract from cravings.
  4. Nicotine Replacement Therapy: Consider using nicotine replacement products like gums, patches, or inhalers to gradually reduce nicotine withdrawal symptoms.
  5. Stay Strong and Focused: Overcoming addiction is challenging, but with determination and perseverance, it is possible. Surround yourself with positive influences and remind yourself of the reasons why quitting is crucial for your long-term health.

The Bottom Line

The story of Jackson Allard, the 22-year-old vaping addict given a mere 1% chance of survival, serves as a stark reminder of the dangers associated with vaping. This harmful habit, once thought to be a safer option, has now led to a life-threatening situation for Allard. It is important for individuals to understand the risks involved and take steps to quit vaping. By raising awareness about the dangers and providing guidance on quitting, we can hope to prevent similar tragedies and advocate for healthier choices in the future.

Keep Reading: This is The Scariest Symptom of Vape Addiction, According to a Psychologist


  1. “He had a 1% chance of living:” 22-year-old Fargo man receives double lung transplant.” Valley News Live.  Kjersti Maday. January 18, 2024.
  2. EHE Researchers Find Thousands of Unknown Chemicals in E-Cigarettes.” Public Health. Jill Rosen. October 8, 2021.
  3. Vaping: What You Need to Know.” Kid’s Health