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August 1979

Carbon-Monoxide-Induced Muscle Necrosis

Author Affiliations

Department of Neurology University of Virginia School of Medicine Charlottesville, VA 22908

Arch Neurol. 1979;36(8):523-524. doi:10.1001/archneur.1979.00500440093027

To the Editor.—  I am not aware of any cases reported in the Englishlanguage literature of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning producing rhabdomyolysis and myoglobinuria without signs of localized pressure necrosis. Many reports of CO poisoning, pressure necrosis, and subsequent myoglobinuria are, in fact, cases of overexposure to natural gas that contains no CO. The following case is of a man with myoglobinuria, but no pressure necrosis.

Report of a Case.—  Gas company officials who investigated the apartment of this patient at the time of the incident found several improperly connected appliances and dirty flues. (Incomplete combustion of natural gas commonly produces CO.) Neighbors, detecting a strong odor of natural gas, called the rescue squad, who found the patient unconscious. He was lying beside a second man who had typical cherry-red viscera at the time of autopsy. Therapy with oxygen was begun during the patient's trip to the hospital, but a