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Carbon Monoxide Poisoning (cont.)

When to Seek Medical Care

If you or someone you know have any of the signs and symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, go to a hospital emergency department immediately, particularly if several people in the household are affected, or if pets are affected as well.

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Diagnosis

Because signs and symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning are not specific, a blood test to look for it is the most effective way to make the diagnosis.

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Self-Care at Home

  • Move all family members and pets to fresh air away from the source of carbon monoxide (CO).
  • No home therapy is available for carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Seek medical care in a hospital emergency department.

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Treatment

  • The treatment for carbon monoxide poisoning is high-dose oxygen, usually using a facemask attached to an oxygen reserve bag.
  • Carbon monoxide levels in the blood may be periodically checked until they are low enough to safely send the patient home.
  • In severe poisoning, if available, a hyperbaric pressure chamber may be used to provide even higher doses of oxygen to the patient.
  • It is important to find the source of the carbon monoxide. A local fire department or public service company will help find the source of carbon monoxide and make sure the building is safe.
Last Reviewed 11/17/2017

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Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Toxicity, Carbon Monoxide »

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless, odorless gas produced by incomplete combustion of carbonaceous material.

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