A guide to carbon monoxide...

Carbon monoxide poisoning heart damage

Carbon monoxide poisoning can cause heart damage. Survivors should have their heart checked and monitored.

When inhaled, not all carbon monoxide attaches to red blood cells. A small amount can also travel in blood plasma and cause cell damage without ever binding to hemoglobin or showing up on a blood test.

This "free" carbon monoxide in the bloodstream can trigger cell death of the lining of the heart and blood vessels, leading to the hardening of arteries (atherosclerotic heart disease). The same process also appears to kill brain cells responsible for memory and learning.

Although not widely known, the heart is more than just a pump. Neurocardiology research has shown that the heart is also a sensory organ and an information center with its own nervous system that is sophisticated enough to qualify as a "heart brain."

The heart and brain continuously talk to each other and influence one anothers functioning.

Although not well known, the heart actually sends more information to brain than the brain sends to the heart. The signals that the heart sends to the brain can influence perception, emotional processing, and cognition.

The heart contains nerves and carbon monoxide poisoning can cause nerve damage.

Your comments about carbon monoxide poisoning...

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Long term effects
Bill from Minnesota
I was exposed to CO2 as a youngster (9 y/o). I was clinically dead from it for 5- 10 minutes when paramedics revived me with CPR.

I am 50 now and cant seem to remember much in the short term, long term is fine. Its almost impossible to read a book and remember it until the end. Could this be from the exposure?

I also thought I heard on the radio one time they did a study and found those who had extreme exposure to CO2 in their youth were at high risk to heart failure before they got out of their 40's.

Anyone else here that?

Heart palpation
LaVerne from Baltimore
After my exposure I kept having chest heaviness n Docters kept telling me nothing wrong I've done stress test they say no findings. I have 2 tell them you need 2 think outside the box. I also still have nausea which I never had b4. I now take a supplement called oxi-boost the boost the immune system which helps a lot I take it twice a day. I don't feel as fatigue as I use 2 I have been taking it over a year now I won't cure u but u will feel a lot better when u take it. Check it out @ WWW.sunpridenutrition.com or call 410.727.4679 . I live locally so I just walk in the store.

SADS
cheryl fielding from australia
My daughter died suddenly at the age of 18 from cardiomyopathy I was exposed to co while I was carrying her, do you think this is related

What kind of doctor?
Nancy
Can someone recommend whether one should see a pulmonologist or a cardiologist?

It looks like there is a place that specializes in CO poisoning, the Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation.
Here's an article by their researchers:
http://jama.ama-assn.org/content/295/4/398.long

It states:
"The most well-designed clinical trial of hyperbaric oxygen therapy in acute CO poisoning demonstrated improved neurological outcomes with hyperbaric oxygen at 6-week, 6-month, and 12-month follow-up."

So, one could get hyperbaric treatment long after the initial poisoning.

Heart, memory issues
Steph from TX
My family was poisoned with severe CO when I was 16 in Springfield, MO. While they never gave us information on what would happen in the future, I have to wonder if the heavy, irregular heartbeats, short-term memory, and exhaustion I've experienced in the years since are tied-in somehow. Are there any cures for this?

Irregular heart beat
Ernie from USA
I have many symptoms since my poisoning. My heart beat is especially irregular when I feel stressed or have caffeine. It is not painful but definitely feels heavier and way different than before I was poisoned. My doctors says I am fine but I am seeking a second opinion.

Carbon Monoxide Poisoned
Christine from Ohio
I was poisoned from 2002 8 months into 2003. We bought a home and it had CM leaking though it. We told our insurance company who at the time was American Family. They told us to just keep the windows open until the new furnance and hot water tank was installed in August! The whole family was exposed but I am a house hermit so I got the brunt of it all.

I have numerous health problems. The first doctor I had would\\\'t do anything he just said there is no after effects from carbon monoxide. I am sick all the time and in pain. Never gets any better just worse. I now have a heart condition I didn\\\\\\\'t have, seizures, fibromyalgia, memory problems etc.. almost all the symptoms that are on the page.

My hubby and my family especially my Mom is my rock. It is very hard to deal with let alone survive. No one understands what you are going though.

I am glad to have survived but it is a daily struggle.

We tried to sue the seller but she never showed up in court. She knew about the problem otherwise she would have shown up and faced the music. Instead she decided sell a home that had a serious problem and let a family suffer.

My CO-symptoms
Nigel
Definitely have heart palpitations and a heavier feeling heartbeat at times. It feels different than before my poisoning.

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