8-year-old girl admitted to hospital after developing carbon monoxide poisoning when taking shower using gas water heater

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9th December 2022 – (Hong Kong)  The Centre for Health Protection (CHP) of the Department of Health today appealed to members of the public to take precautionary measures against carbon monoxide poisoning as a notification of a suspected case of carbon monoxide poisoning after the use of gas water heater was received from Pamela Youde Nethersole Eastern Hospital (PYNEH) yesterday.

The case involved an 8-year-old girl, who developed dizziness and syncope when she had a shower using a gas water heater inside the bathroom at home on 6th December. She was sent to Princess Margaret Hospital and was later transferred to PYNEH for treatment. She is now in stable condition. 

The case has been referred to the relevant department for follow-up.

 The CHP said that carbon monoxide is a colourless, odourless and tasteless gas which is a by-product from incomplete combustion of any fuel which contains carbon, such as wood, natural gas and gasoline.

Exposure to a low concentration of carbon monoxide can lead to a range of symptoms such as dizziness, headache, tiredness and nausea; whereas exposure to a high concentration of carbon monoxide can lead to impaired vision, disturbed co-ordination, unconsciousness, brain damage or even death.

The CHP reminded members of the public that a gas water heater should be used in a well-ventilated area. They should seek medical attention immediately if suspected of developing symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning.

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