Case Report
Volume 4 Issue 3 - 2020
Acute Carbon Monoxide Intoxication. A Case Study in Laboratory Practice and Postmortem Diagnostics
Mariana Yordanova1,2*
1Military Medical Academy, Multiprofile Hospital for Active Treatment, Varna, Bulgaria
2Department of General Medicine and Clinical Laboratory, Medical University of Varna “Prof. Dr. Paraskev Stoyanov”, Varna, Bulgaria
*Corresponding Author: Mariana Yordanova, Military Medical Academy, Multiprofile Hospital for Active Treatment, Varna, Bulgaria.
Received: February 05, 2020; Published: February 19, 2020


Introduction: The Carboxyhemoglobin (COHb) study is fundamental to the diagnosis of carbon monoxide poisoning, even after death, and to clarify the cause of intoxication.

Aim: The aim is to present a case of a person dying of an acute (fulminant) form of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning that has occurred under unusual conditions.

Case Report: We present the case of a 44-year-old man who was removed dead from a vertical hole, nailed to the rope by which he descends into the hole. Illegally TNT an explosion was triggered the previous day to widen the opening. The man was pulled dead by firefighters, 2 hours after the descent. The Dräger X-AM 5000 measured the presence of toxic gases in the air at a depth of 10 meters. The blood levels of HbCO were determined spectrophotometrically on a CO-oximeter ABL 800 (Radiometer).

Results: The CO values in the rock cavity air exceed the dynamic range for CO measurement (>> 2290 mg/m3). An increase in the levels of other toxic gases is observed (methane and hydrogen cyanide). The amount of COHb in corpse blood was 77.3%. At these high values, acute tissue anoxia and block oxidation processes in the cells occurred. CO is a cell poison.

Conclusion: The leading cause of death is carbon monoxide poisoning resulting from very high levels of CO in the inhaled air. The study of CОHb levels with the ABL 800 CO oximeter is a reliable method for detecting CO intoxication in live and dead individuals.

Keywords: CO; COHb; Co Oximetry; Oxygen; Methane; Hydrogen Cyanide


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Citation: Mariana Yordanova. “Acute Carbon Monoxide Intoxication. A Case Study in Laboratory Practice and Postmortem Diagnostics”. EC Emergency Medicine and Critical Care 4.3 (2020): 01-05.

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