CARBON MONOXIDE "The Silent Killer"


co Every year approximately 50 people die in England & Wales due to the effects of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning caused by gas appliances and flues that have not been properly installed or maintained.. A further 4,000 people are taken to hospital suffering its effects and 200 people are hospitalized. It only takes a very small amount of carbon monoxide to start affecting people's health and causing illness. The effects can be felt from as little as 0.01% of carbon monoxide to the total air in the room.


Symptoms of mild acute poisoning include (but are not exclusive to) lightheadedness, confusion, headaches, vertigo, and flu-like effects; larger exposures can lead to significant toxicity of the central nervous system and heart, and even death. Following acute poisoning, long-term sequelae often occur. Carbon monoxide can also have severe effects on the fetus of a pregnant woman. Chronic exposure to low levels of carbon monoxide can lead to depression, confusion, and memory loss. Carbon monoxide mainly causes adverse effects in humans by combining with hemoglobin to form carboxyhemoglobin (HbCO) in the blood.


To avoid these symptoms an annual check is a must.


FURTHER INFORMATION (Links open in new window)


NHS Choices - Carbon monoxide poisoning.

Department of Health - Carbon monoxide poisoning alert.

BBC News - 'Fears over carbon monoxide poisoning figures.'




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Michael Munn - 03/03/2013