What is the incidence of carbon monoxide (CO) toxicity in the US?

Updated: Dec 31, 2020
  • Author: Guy N Shochat, MD; Chief Editor: Gil Z Shlamovitz, MD, FACEP  more...
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Unintentional, non–fire-related CO poisoning is responsible for approximately 15,000 emergency department visits annually in the United States. In 2000-2009 the exposure site was reported as residence in 77.6% of cases and workplace in 12%. [10] The most common source of CO exposure in the home is furnaces (18.5%), followed by motor vehicles, stoves, gas lines, water heaters, and generators. [11] During 1999–2012, deaths from unintentional non–fire-related CO poisoning in the US totaled 6136, an average of 438 deaths per year. [12]

In 2019, the American Association of Poison Control Centers reported 14,168 single exposures to CO, 395 of which were intentional. Major outcomes occurred in 362 cases, and 48 deaths were reported. [13]

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