Interrelation between the Poisoning Severity Score, carboxyhaemoglobin levels and in-hospital clinical course of carbon monoxide poisoning


Dr Arif Alper Cevik, MD, Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine, Associate Director, Emergency Department, Osmangazi University Medical Centre, Faculty of Medicine (TIP FAKULTESI), Department of Emergency Medicine (ACIL SERVIS), 26480, Meselik, Eskisehir, Turkey
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The aim of the present study is to evaluate the relationship between the Poisoning Severity Score (PSS) and carboxyhaemoglobin (COHb) levels in patients with carbon monoxide poisoning (COP) using outcome as the measure. The study was designed as a retrospective chart review of patients with final diagnosis of COP. Correlation of PSS and COHb levels at presentation was evaluated with collected data. Majority of the cases were grade 1 (minor) PSS (134 cases, 73.6%) and 93.4% of these patients made a complete recovery. There were six deaths (mortality 3.3%) and six in-hospital major complications (IHMCs) (3.3%) (please specify whether the complications were in the patients who died). There is moderate correlation between PSS and outcome (p < 0.001, r = 0.493). Grade 3 (severe) PSS was significantly different from other grades for outcome (six mortalities and three IHMCs). Patients classified as grade 3 and patients who died had a significantly higher mean age (p < 0.05, 41.8 ± 23.6 and p < 0.01, 60.1 ± 20.3, respectively). Mean COHb level of grade 3 (33.2 ± 13.9%) was significantly higher than that of other grades (p < 0.05). COHb levels according to outcome were not different (? within the patients in grade 3). Decreased level of consciousness, acidosis, tachycardia, high glucose and leucocyte levels showed significant relation with higher PSS, COHb level and adverse outcome. We conclude that the PSS is a reliable guide in COP. Value of the PSS in COP may be enhanced if additional factors and investigations are included.