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4 Questions About Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Frequently Asked Questions About Carbon Monoxide Poisoning


Updated January 24, 2014

Carbon monoxide poisoning is not always obvious. Often carbon monoxide poisoning mimics other conditions or is hard to detect.

Below are some of the most common questions I hear about carbon monoxide poisoning. If your question isn't covered, contact me. I'll be happy to answer your question and add it to the list.

1. Can long-term exposure to carbon monoxide hurt me?

This is probably the most common question we get here at About.com First Aid. In most cases, people are concerned about appliances leaking carbon monoxide into the home over a long period of time. What kind of damage can occur and does it cause long-term effects?

2. Could carbon monoxide poisoning cause a sore throat?

A reader asks: Last Tuesday night our carbon monoxide detector went off. We have a large house and the detector was about 14 feet above the floor and (quite a distance) away from our furnace. I dialed 911, the ambulance came. Too make a long story short, my husband's throat is so swollen. Is it possible that (his sore throat) is from the effects of carbon monoxide or could it be a cold coming on?

3. Is there a test for carbon monoxide poisoning?

A reader is complaining of nausea only while at work in her office building. Personally, work always makes me want to throw up, but she suspects it's the building and wants to know: Is there a test for carbon monoxide poisoning?

4. Why is my smoke alarm or carbon monoxide alarm chirping?

The fire department comes along and installs a new carbon monoxide alarm in the hallway -- or maybe it's a smoke alarm. Either way, the thing starts chirping a few months later. What's up?
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