Carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning is frequent worldwide but knowledge regarding the epidemiology is insufficient. The aim of this study was to clarify the extent of this intoxication, its mortality and factors associated with mortality. National databases from Statistics Denmark were used to identify individuals who suffered from CO-poisoning during 1995-2015, as well as information regarding co-morbidities, mortality and manner of death. During the period from 1995 to 2015, 22,930 patients suffered from CO-poisoning in Denmark, and 21,138 of these patients (92%) were hospitalized. A total of 2,102 patients died within the first 30 days after poisoning (9.2%). Among these, 1,792 (85% of 2,102) were declared dead at the scene and 310 (15% of 2,102) died during hospitalization. Deaths due to CO-poisoning from smoke were intentional in 6.3% of cases, whereas deaths due to CO containing gases were intentional in 98.0% of cases. Among patients who survived >30 days, there was no significant difference in survival when comparing hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBO) treatment with no HBO treatment after adjustment for age and co-morbidities such as drug abuse, psychiatric disease, stroke, alcohol abuse, arterial embolism, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cerebrovascular disease and atrial fibrillation. Several co-morbidities predicted poorer outcomes for patients who survived the initial 30 days. Poisoning from smoke and/or CO is a frequent incident in Denmark accounting for numerous contacts with hospitals and deaths. Both intoxication and mortality are highly associated with co-morbidities interfering with cognitive and physical function. Treatment with HBO was not seen to have an effect on survival.

Simonsen, Thorsteinsson, Mortensen, Torp-Pedersen, Kjærgaard, Andreasen (2019). Carbon monoxide poisoning in Denmark with focus on mortality and factors contributing to mortality. PloS one, 2019 ;14(1):e0210767. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30653615

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