Carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning is a major public health issue in the United States that accounts for approximately 50% of poisoning cases in the nation each year and around 50,000 emergency room visits. In most instances of CO poisoning, the culprit is a malfunctioning or poorly tended heating system within the home or, occasionally, commercial building, which causes the system to leak this hazardous gas. One of the more insidious aspects of CO poisoning is that the gas is odorless and colorless, and victims of CO poisoning often do not realize that there is a problem until they begin to experience the effects of poisoning and have no choice but to seek medical attention. Unfortunately, many victims of CO poisoning die before they are able to seek treatment. This paper makes use of a qualitative, systematic literature review to examine the four major parts of the brain that are most severely affected by CO poisoning. Overall, the literature review showed that the white matter, globus pallidus, basal ganglia, and cortex are the parts of the brain most severely impacted by CO poisoning. While many CO poisoning victims do make it to the hospital on time and are treated, they may nonetheless suffer long-term neurological consequences as a result of their exposure. As such, CO poisoning is a major public health issue.

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Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International License.


First published in International Journal of Healthcare and Medical Sciences, see here.

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