Carbon Monoxide Poisoning


Common in house fires and other fire and smoke in closed spaces, carbon monoxide poisoning is the leading cause of poisoning death in the United States. The danger lies in the odorless, colorless and tasteless nature of the gas that has a 100-fold greater affinity for hemoglobin that oxygen. Symptoms include visual impairment, memory loss, decreased level of consciousness, and motor and sensory loss.

Pregnant women have a higher risk of poisoning since the hemoglobin in the baby binds more tightly than adult hemoglobin does.

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy works to accelerate the release and elimination of carbon monoxide from the blood, saturate the tissues with 100 percent oxygen and decrease cerebral swelling. One treatment is generally required.

Marietta Daily Journal article “Close Call”