Carbon Dioxide Narcosis
St. Lucie Medical Center
Hypercapnia, CO2, coma, COPD, lung diseases
Emergency Medicine | Pulmonology
Hypercapnia, a state of elevated serum carbon dioxide (CO2), can manifest as a broad spectrum of disease, the most severe of which is CO2 narcosis. The delineating feature of CO2 narcosis is a depressed level of consciousness. It is essential to recognize impending or current CO2 narcosis; if left untreated, it can result in coma or death. This article primarily focuses on CO2 narcosis, but it is crucial to appreciate that hypercapnia has multiple end-organ effects that contribute to the patient's deterioration. Many etiologies contribute to hypercapnia; the most commonly encountered is chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Treatment is focused on fixing the underlying cause and demands an interprofessional approach to optimize patient outcomes.
Publisher or Conference
Drechsler M, Morris J. Carbon Dioxide Narcosis. [Updated 2019 Dec 17]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2019 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK551620/