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Carbon monoxide may cause long-lasting heart damage
Date:1/29/2008

control group designed to induce oxygen deprivation; and a group exposed to a combination of CO and oxygen, which best simulates the environmental conditions of CO poisoning. The pressure generated in the left ventricle of the heart was used as an indicator of heart function.

Left ventricular-generated pressure was decreased in both the nitrogren control and CO groups compared to the control group. However, the group exposed to CO did not recover cardiac function including blood pressure to the extent that the nitogren control group did after treatment with 100 percent oxygen. These findings suggest that CO has an independent toxic effect on the heart separate from oxygen deprivation.

Known as the invisible killer, CO exposure is responsible for an estimated 15,000 emergency department visits and 500 unintentional deaths each year. It is an odorless, colorless gas produced by common household appliances that burn fuel, such as gasoline, oil and wood. When not properly ventilated or used incorrectly, CO emitted by these appliances can build up to dangerous levels. CO poisoning can be very difficult to diagnose, since its symptoms resemble those of the flu and other common illnesses. Pregnant women, children and the elderly are most susceptible to CO poisoning.


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Contact: Jessica Collins Grimes
jgrimes2@lifespan.org
401-432-1328
Lifespan
Source:Eurekalert

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