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Hurricane Florence—clinical guidance for carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning
  • Published Date:
    September 16, 2018
  • Series:
    HAN ; 415
  • Language:
    English
Filetype[PDF-461.70 KB]


Details:
  • Description:
    Distributed via the CDC Health Alert Network

    September 16, 2018 1345 ET (1:45 PM ET)

    CDCHAN-00415

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is reminding clinicians seeing patients from the areas affected by Hurricane Florence to maintain a high index of suspicion for CO poisoning. Other people who may be exposed to the same CO source may need to be identified and assessed.

    The signs and symptoms of CO exposure are variable and nonspecific. A tension-type headache is the most common symptom of mild CO poisoning. Other symptoms may include dizziness, flu-like symptoms (e.g., weakness, nausea, vomiting, fatigue) without a fever, drowsiness, chest pain, and altered mental status.

    Clinical manifestations of severe CO poisoning include tachycardia, tachypnea, hypotension, metabolic acidosis, dysrhythmias, myocardial ischemia or infarction, noncardiogenic pulmonary edema, neurologic findings including irritability, impaired memory, cognitive and sensory disturbances, ataxia, altered or loss of consciousness, seizures, coma, and death, although any organ system might be involved.

    Although CO poisoning can be fatal to anyone, children, pregnant women, the unborn, persons with sickle cell disease, older adults, and persons with chronic illness (e.g., heart or lung disease) are particularly vulnerable.

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