Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in a Psychiatric Patient Mistaken for Indefinite Complaints
  • Miki Hamashoji
    Department of General Medicine, Kumamoto Medical Center, Kumamoto, Japan
  • Kotaro Kunitomo
    Department of General Medicine, Kumamoto Medical Center, Kumamoto, Japan
  • Taro Shimizu
    Department of Diagnostic and Generalist Medicine, Dokkyo Medical University Hospital, Tochigi, Japan
  • Takahiro Tsuji
    Department of Diagnostic and Generalist Medicine, Dokkyo Medical University Hospital, Tochigi, Japan

Keywords

Carbon monoxide poisoning, emergency room, diagnostic error

Abstract

Introduction: Carbon monoxide (CO) binds to haemoglobin with a much higher affinity than oxygen, forming carboxyhaemoglobin (COHb), which impairs oxygen transport and utilization. As CO concentrations can easily peak in closed environments, non-fire-related CO poisoning can also occur. However, because CO poisoning is often a nonspecific clinical finding, it can result in a diagnostic error. This report details the misdiagnosis of a 42-year-old male patient with psychiatric disorders.

Case description: The patient presented to the hospital with dizziness, abdominal pain and nausea on multiple occasions. His symptoms were ascribed to his psychiatric conditions. On his fifth visit, we diagnosed the patient with CO poisoning.

Discussion: It is apparent that this patient was misdiagnosed because of his medical history, and standard analysis was overlooked. When patients with psychiatric disorders have nonspecific symptoms, it is important to check for urgent underlying conditions during diagnosis.

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    Published: 2022-03-22
    Issue: 2022: Vol 9 No 3 (view)


    How to cite:
    1.
    Hamashoji M, Kunitomo K, Shimizu T, Tsuji T. Carbon Monoxide Poisoning in a Psychiatric Patient Mistaken for Indefinite Complaints. EJCRIM 2022;9 doi:10.12890/2022_003242.

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