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July 25, 1977

Medical News

JAMA. 1977;238(4):293-302. doi:10.1001/jama.1977.03280040013001

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Early bronchoscopy, blood gas levels show airway smoke injury  The recent disastrous fires in a Newport, Ky, supper club and in a Columbia, Tenn, prison are reminders of the lethal potential of carbon monoxide and other gases produced by fire. As in the equally devastating Coconut Grove fire in Boston in 1942, many of the victims died not of burns but of smoke inhalation.In fact, in one major burn service, no burned patient who arrived at the hospital unconscious after a fire inside a building has survived, according to Willard A. Fry, MD, assistant professor of surgery at Northwestern University Medical School and senior attending physician at the Evanston (Ill) Hospital. He discussed the problem at the recent Boston meeting of the American Broncho-Esophagological Association.In the three years from 1974 through 1976, there were 243 patients admitted to the Evanston Hospital Burn Unit, Dr Fry said. Overall